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NiJMBEE 1 — Januaey 1918 

Arms and Equipment for the Iowa Troops in the Civil War 

Cyril B. Upham 3 

State Finances in Iowa During the Civil War 

Ivan L. Pollock 53 

Early Eeports Concerning the Des Moines River 108 

Some Publications 121 

Western Americana 125 

lowana 127 

Historical Societies - 139 

Notes and Comment 149 

Contributors 152 

Number 2 — Apeil 1918 

Relief Work in Iowa During the Civil War 

Earl S. Fullbrook 155 

The Death of General Albert Sidney Johnston on the Battle- 
field of Shiloh Joseph W. Rich 275 

Some Publications 282 

Western Americana 286 

lowana 288 

Historical Societies 297 

Notes and Comment 307 

Contributors 311 


Number 3 — July 1918 

Frontier Defense in Iowa, 1850-1865 Dan Elbert Clark 315 

The Ages of the Soldiers in the Civil War W. W. Gist 387 

The Influence of Wheat and Cotton on Anglo-American 
Relations During the Civil War 

Louis Bernard Schmidt 400 

Some Publications 440 

Western Americana 443 

lowana 444 

Historical Societies 454 

Notes and Comment 464 

Contributors 467 

Number 4 — October 1918 

Social Work at Camp Dodge Fred E. Haynes 471 

Some Publications 548 

Western Americana 553 

lowana 555 

Historical Societies 563 

Notes and Comment 572 

Contributor 575 

Index 577 


Iowa Journal 


H i storj^ond Politics 


PublisKed Quairterlyby 


Iowa. City Iowa. 

Entered December 26 1902 at Iowa €it;r Iowa as seeond-ciais^. mattt r 

of JuJy lu ijiy^ 

Associate Editor, DAN B. CLARK 


No. 1 


Anns and Equipment for the Iowa Troops m the Civ^ii 
^Yj^p ^ ^ Cyril B. Upham 


State Finances in Iowa During the Civil War 


Early Reports Concerning the ues momes ni\ei 


Some Publications 


Western Americana . • • - 




Historical Societies 


Notes and Comment 




(,i,pii,tnh: ' ' / ' ^^n^c TfJstorical Society of Iowa 


Published Quaeteblt 


SuB^cEirnoN Peioe: $2.00 Single Numbke: 60 .Ointi 

Addrcsi all Communications to 
TuE State Historical Society Iowa City Iowa 



VOL. XVI — 1 


At the outbreak of the Civil War the State of Iowa was 
in a condition of almost total disarmament. Not a single 
company of regular troops was stationed within the limits 
of the State; and there was not a fort, garrison, military 
post, or arsenal located on Iowa soil. The nearest arsenal 
was at St. Louis. Indeed, in 1861 there were but two 
arsenals west of the Mississippi River : at St. Louis and at 
Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. There had been some agitation 
for the establishment of military posts at Fort Dodge, 
Sioux City, and Council Bluffs, but it had been stifled by 
the ^'masterly inactivity'' of the General Assembly. That 
body, for a number of years previous to the conflict, had not 
considered military affairs seriously. The legislature had 
been worse than apathetic: it had been trifling, even jocose. 
Committees on military affairs seem to have considered it 
their main duty to furnish entertainment for the Assembly. 
A special committee appointed in 1858 to inquire into the 
number of arms received from the United States govern- 
ment and their place of deposit failed to make any report. 
The chief executive was also ignorant of military matters. 
Governor Ralph P. Lowe stated to the House of Repre- 
sentatives in 1858, in response to a query, that he was un- 
able to gain definite information as to the number of arms 
received from the general government, and as to their con- 
dition and disposition.^ 

1 r/ie Dubuque WeeTcly Times, March 27, 1862; Senate Journal, 1858, pp. 
78, 103; Bouse Journal, 1858, p. 502; Shambaugh's Messages and Proclama- 
tions of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. II, pp. 201, 202. 



As a matter of fact the number of arms in Iowa was 
almost negligible. What few arms there were in the State 
were of a primitive pattern and practically useless for 
actual warfare. Between 1850 and 1860 there had been 
received from the general government only 1850 muskets 
and 115 Harper's Ferry pattern rifles. The majority of 
these guns (1790 in number) were sent to the State in July, 
1856, under authority of a special act of Congress of that 
year. They were old flint lock muskets altered to the per- 
cussion type. 

This scarcity of arms in Iowa was in part the natural 
consequence of the do-nothing'' policy of the General 
Assembly, as a result of which Iowa was not receiving its 
quota of arms. It was said that while other States, by 
reason of their well-directed efforts to effect a thorough 
military organization, have received their allotment of 
arms and accoutrements every year, and been provided 
with well-fitted up arsenals, the State of Iowa has never 
received anything of the kind, if we except a few muskets 
set aside to her by a special act of Congress in 1856". 
This situation had arisen because ^4n the absence of all 
laws for the enrollment and organization of the militia, of 
course the proper returns could not be made, and as a conse- 
quence the Secretary of War very properly refused to 
transfer to this State its quota of arms and accoutrements, 
camp equippages, etc."^ 

Even had arms been issued to Iowa each year as they 
were to the other States, the number would have been much 
less than a State with the population of Iowa should have 
received. The distribution was based on the Congressional 

^Report of the Adjutant-General of Iowa, 1861, pp. 9, 10; War of the Ee- 
hellion: Ojjicial Records, Sor. ITT, Vol. T, p. 57; Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 
11, 1861. Iowa had received a few muakets in 1851 and a few rifles in 1858, 
hut in the main this statement was true. — Report of the Adjutant-General of 
Iowa, 1861, pp. 9, 10. 


apportionment of 1850, whereas, by the census of 1860 it 
was shown that between 1850 and 1860 Iowa had increased 
in population 251 per cent. Wisconsin had increased 154 
per cent, Illinois 101 per cent, Michigan 90 per cent, Indiana 
37 per cent, and Ohio 18 per cent.^ 

In 1860 a few arms were placed in Iowa by the Federal 
government. These consisted of one hundred rifled mus- 
kets of .58-inch caliber, costing $13.93; and twelve long- 
range rifles of .58-inch caliber, costing $17.43. Indeed, it 
appears that in 1860 Iowa was treated more liberally than 
either Wisconsin or Illinois. At this time some ordnance, 
a few revolvers, and the like were also furnished to the 
State.^ Early in 1861, before the war began, Iowa received 
forty rifled muskets and one hundred rifles. Thus it is evi- 
dent that the arms in Iowa at the outbreak of the war were 
few in number. While not strictly accurate, the statement 
of Governor Kirkwood that ^^when the war broke out we 
had in the State some 1,500 old muskets, about 200 rifles 
and rifled muskets, and four 6-pounder pieces of artillery'' 
is indicative of the situation. A later writer has declared 
there were **no arms worth counting in all the state'', and 
in this statement there is probably more than a modicum 
of truth.^ 

What few guns were owned by the State of Iowa at this 
time were in the hands of local militia companies, unorgan- 
ized, undrilled, and scattered throughout the State. The 
captain of each company of not less than thirty men, could, 

sWar of the BehelUon: Offlcial Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 128; Council 
Blufs Nonpareil, April 13, 1861. 

4 War of the Behellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 28; Beport of the 
Adjutant-General of Iowa, 1861, p. 10. 

c Beport of the Adjutant-General of Iowa, 1861, p. 10; War of the BehelUon: 
Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 560, 561; Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 
29; Lathrop's The Life and Times of Samuel J. KirTcwood, p. 113; Laws of 
Iowa, 1856 (Extra Session), p. 89; The Dubuque WeeTcly Times, April 25, 
1861, p. 5; Burlington Daily HawTc-Eye, September 6, 1861. 


upon filing a bond ^'for their safe keeping and return there- 
of secure from the Governor a loan of arms for his men. 
He in turn took individual bonds from the members of his 
company for each gun entrusted to their keeping. A part 
of the guns were also placed in the hands of companies and 
individuals along the northern and western borders, where 
there was danger of Indian raids. Some communities had 
secured a small number of arms from private sources in 
addition to those furnished by the State. Thus the people 
of the little village of Epworth had in their possession 
some musketry and a village cannon. At Washington, 
Iowa, a makeshift cannon was constructed out of a steel 
tube covered with iron.^ 


The actual coming of war created an urgent need for 
arms and ammunition. Not only must the frontier be pro- 
tected from Indian raids, but the southern border of the 
State must be made safe from incursions of Confederate 
sympathizers from Missouri. There was also felt to be 
some danger from * * Copperheads ' ' within the State. ' ' The 
cry for 'muskets,' 'more muskets,' came up from every 
quarter of the state", and the efforts of Governor Kirk- 
wood to secure arms were unceasing. But home defense 
was only one phase of the problem. The troops that were 
to be raised for service at the front must also be armed, 
clothed, and equipped. This was one of the most trouble- 
some questions with which Governor Kirkwood had to con- 
tend. While the Federal government agreed to furnish 
arms and equipments for the troops after they were mus- 
tered into service, they were to be maintained at the expense 
of the State until that time. Besides, the War Department 

« One hunflrod and seventy muskets were "Lost, destroyed, and not accounted 
for". — Report of the Adjutant-General of Iowa, 1861, p. 11, 


was unable to meet all needs immediately, and for a time 
the State was obliged to care for the troops even after they 
were mustered into United States service."^ 

Efforts to secure arms for the State were made even be- 
fore the outbreak of the war. On January 25, 1861, Gov- 
ernor Kirkwood appealed to the Secretary of War for an 
additional number of arms to be stored at Des Moines or 
Fort Dodge, to be used in case of an Indian outbreak. He 
also suggested the advisability of stationing a United States 
army officer at one of these places. Later, the withdrawal 
of the troops from Fort Randall and Fort Kearny on the 
upper Missouri caused so much uneasiness on the western 
border of Iowa that on April 18th Governor Kirkwood 
asked the War Department to store five hundred long- 
range rifles at Council Bluffs and a like number at Sioux 
City.^ At the same time he advised the residents of the 
border counties to form themselves into companies of 

minute men" for their own protection, promising that 
arms would be supplied as soon as they could be secured. 
On April 25th he wrote to Caleb Baldwin at Council Bluffs 
that there *^are not now any arms to send there except 
about fifty muskets that will be sent at once. The people 
should organize as minute men, and arm themselves with 
private arms as best they can.'' Double-barreled shot- 
guns and hunting rifles", wrote the Governor to another 
citizen of Iowa, although not the best, are good arms in 
the hands of brave men." ^ 

'^Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 46; War of the Behellion: Official Becords, 
Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 118. 

^War of the Behellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 57, 86, 89. 
Captain Taylor, the Commandant at Fort Kearny, had, before leaving the fort, 
spiked twelve of the best cannon under his charge. — The Dubuque WeeUy 
Times, May 30, 1861, p. 4. 

9 Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 11, 1861; Lathrop's The Life and Times of 
Samuel J. KirTcwood, p. 134; War of the Behellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, 
Vol. I, p. 561. 


Appeals for arms came in from every corner of the State. 
Caleb Baldwin, a Justice of the Iowa Supreme Court, resi- 
dent at Council Bluffs, appealed directly to the Secretary of 
War for arms for use in the protection of the western 
border. The people of Sioux City were equally as anxious 
as those of Council Bluffs to secure the means of defense. 
Citizens of the southern counties also became clamorous 
for arms. Everywhere companies organized for war ser- 
vice were requesting arms with which to drill. 

Meanwhile the Governor was moving heaven & earth 
almost to get a supply of arms for the State. There were 
men in abundance, but it seemed impossible to secure arms. 
The State was without funds. In a speech at Davenport on 
the evening of April 16th, Grovernor Kirkwood had esti- 
mated that the enlistment and maintenance of the first 
regiment would probably cost about ten thousand dollars, 
and stated that he would undertake to raise that sum at 
once, if he had to pledge every dollar of his own property. 
His letter to the Secretary of War on April 18th was fol- 
lowed on April 23rd by the sending of Senator Grimes as a 
special messenger to Washington to secure arms. On April 
24th Kirkwood wrote to the Governor of Connecticut ask- 
ing if arms could be bought of private manufacturers in 
that State. Owing to the interruption of the mail and tele- 
graph nothing had yet been heard from these sources on 
May lst.ii 

Governor Kirkwood seemed unable to impress the 
authorities at Washington with the need for arms in Iowa. 
Secretary Cameron replied to Kirkwood 's letter of April 

10 Byers'H Iowa in War Times, p. 71; War of the Bebellion: Official Becords, 
Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 89, 128. 

11 Letter from Kirkwood to A. ,T. Withrow of Salem, Iowa, April 30, 1861, in 
Kirkwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, p. 39; Des Moines Valley Whig (Keo- 
kuk), April 22, May 13, 1861; The Iowa State Register (Des Moines), May 15, 



ISth that if the Iowa troops were removed from the State 
provision will be made to meet .... the emergen- 
cies'' on the western border. On the same day the Gov- 
ernor wrote a second letter to the Secretary of War. *'If 
no arrangement has yet been made for arms for this State, 
do, for God's sake, send us some", was his appeal. **We 
should have at least 5,000 beyond those required to arm the 
troops the United States may require — say, one-half 
rifles." The officials at Washington apparently thought 
that arms and soldiers at Keokuk afforded sufficient pro- 
tection to the State. glance at the map of Iowa", again 
wrote the Governor on May 4th, **will show you that the 
troops raised in this State will at Keokuk be at least 300 
miles from the nearest point (Council Bluffs), and 400 
miles from the point (Sioux City) most exposed to Indian 
depredations. ' ' 

But back came the reply that 1,000 stand of arms ought 
to be forwarded to Keokuk, to be there taken in charge by 
Colonel Curtis or some other responsible person, to be used 
in case of an emergency." Again Governor Kirkwood pro- 
tested that Iowa was a large State, with only a few miles 
of railroad, absolutely defenseless so far as arms were con- 
cerned, and with danger threatening from ruffians on the 
South and Indians on the frontier. *^We have no arms", 
he wrote. *^I cannot, after diligent inquiry, learn where 
any can be bought .... I must be allowed to urge 
again the absolute necessity of sending a liberal supply to 
this State beyond the quota to arm the troops raised here 
for the service of the United States." At this time Illinois, 
a well settled State with almost no exposed border, had been 
well supplied with arms.^^ 

12 War of the Eebellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 127, 128, 158. 

13 War of the BelelUon: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 162, 185, 186; 
Burlington Daily HawJc-Eye, May 21, 1861. 


Letters were written to John A. Kasson, Fitz Henry 
Warren, and other persons in Washington, urging them to 
impress upon the President the need of this State for arms. 

Every manufacturer of arms in the country was tele- 
graphed and written to for a supply'', but the time required 
to manufacture arms made it impracticable to place de- 
pendence on this source of supply. Besides, the State 
bonds were not in demand, and cash payments were out of 
the question. Arrangements were made with a military 
committee in Chicago for a loan of one thousand guns which 
the committee was to receive, along with others, from the 
Springfield Arsenal. But the arms were stopped in trans- 
itu before they reached Chicago, upon information from the 
Governor of Illinois that that State had been supplied with 
arms from St. Louis. When Governor Kirkwood learned 
that Governor Yates of Illinois had received a supply of 
arms from St. Louis largely in excess of the requisition in 
his favor,^^ he wrote him a letter and also despatched a 
special messenger to Springfield to secure some of the guns, 
if possible.^^ This attempt also was unsuccessful. 

1* Lathrop 's The Life and Times of Samuel J. KirTcwood, p. 138 ; KirJcwood 
Military Letter Boole, No. 1, pp. 182-184; War of the Belellion: Official Bec- 
ords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 163; The Iowa State Register (Des Moines), May 15, 

15 This was the reason why Iowa was unable to secure arms from the St. 
Louis Arsenal. Captain Stokes of Chicago had an order for ten thousand stand 
of arms from the War Department. He went to St. Louis to secure them and 
found the arsenal threatened by secessionists. As a decoy he had five hundred 
old muskets taken to one point on the river to be sent off for repairs. The 
crowd was attracted there, and in the meantime the arsenal force worked until 
two o'clock at night loading the rest of the arms on a steamboat bound for 
Alton and Springfield. With the consent of the officer in charge, Captain 
Stokes overdrew his order and took 21,000 muskets, 500 rifles, 500 revolvers, 
110,000 musket cartridges, and a number of cannon, — Des Moines Valley Whig 
(Keokuk), May 6, 1861, p. 2. 

iQEirkwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, pp. 35, 39; The Iowa State Beg- 
ister (Des Moines), May 15, 1861; War of the Bebellion: Official Becords, Ser. 
Ill, Vol. I, p. 163. 


On the 2nd of May, 1861, Governor Kirkwood telegraphed 
to Simeon Draper, President of the Union Defense Com- 
mittee at New York. ' ' For God 's sake, send us arms ' \ was 
the message flashed over the wires. *^Our First regiment 
has been in drill a week, a thousand strong. It has tents 
and blankets, but no arms. The Second regiment is full, 
and drilling. Send us arms. Ten thousand men can be had, 
if they can have arms." Four days later he wrote to Gen- 
eral John E. Wool, Commander of the Department of the 
East, informing him of the situation, and requesting ' ' 5,000 
long-range rifles or rifle muskets and accoutrements, with 
proper ammunition". A letter dated May 9th, to Eli Whit- 
ney of Connecticut, inquired the prices of rifles equal in 
quality to the United States long-range rifles.^^ 

Efforts to secure arms from the East continued through- 
out the summer. Indeed, in August, 1861, the Governor 
himself went to New York and Washington to secure arms 
and make arrangements for insuring peace on the borders 
of the State.^^ His failure was largely due to the fact that 
the State bonds were not salable.^^ 

During this period, however, there was not a total lack of 
arms in the exposed portions of the State. Arms were 
taken from places where there was no immediate need for 
them and transferred to the border. All guns in every part 
of the State were cleaned and repaired and made service- 

i7B7ers's Iowa in War Times, p. 47; War of the Behellion: Official Eecords, 
Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 163 ; KirJcwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, p. 139. 

18 Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 72; War of the EehelUon: Oficial Eecords, 
Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 433 ; Kirlcwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, p. 309. Gov. 
Kirkwood was again in Washington late in 1862. — Iowa City Eepuhlican, 
January 6, 1863. 

19 Kirlcwood Military Letter BooTc, No. 1, pp. 413-415. On August 3, 1861, 
tlie Governor wrote: "My contract for rifles and revolvers failed, because I 
had no money to pay for them." — Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 72. For a 
discussion of the State bond issue see Pollock's The Iowa War Loan of 1861 in 
The Iowa Journal of History and Politics, Vol. XV, pp. 467-502. 


able. *^Get the 55 muskets of J. M. Byers, at Oskaloosa,'' 
wrote the Adjutant General to James Matthews of Knox- 
ville, ^'and another 12 from E. Sells at Des Moines, and 
place yourself in defense against traitors/' On May 9th 
the Governor wrote to W. S. Robinson, Captain of the 
Union Guards at Columbus City: Please accept for your- 
self & your company my thanks for their cheerful surren- 
der of their arms. ... it increases my regard for your 
company that have been willing to make this sacrifice with- 
out complaint for the protection of their fellow citizens who 
are exposed to danger.'' Many of the newly organized 
volunteer companies were compelled to drill without arms. 
It was reported that a Des Moines cavalry company was 
using wooden swords and it was suggested that they might 
ride wooden horses as well.^^ In some places the people 
secured their own arms without aid from the State. At 
Bloomfield, it was said, the Home Guards ^*have adopted 
and will procure for arms the * Menard rifle' ".^^ 

The Governor and his aids were very active in securing 
arms and ammunition for the Home Guards, and for the 
newly formed companies in the State. Early in May they 
seized the powder in the magazine at Davenport without 
lawful authority. ^^I have forwarded to Council Bluffs 140 
stands of arms, ' ' the Governor told the General Assembly 
late in May, ^^and have ordered one 8-lb. field piece and 
forty revolvers with the necessary equipments and ammu- 
nition transported thither without delay, incurring for ex- 
press charges, freight, etc., an expense now known of 
$359.95. The force necessary to protect the north and 
western frontier should be had by organizing in each county 

20 Byers 's Iowa in War Times, p. 34 ; Kirlcwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, 
pp. 140, ]41; Burlington Daily JlawJc-Eye, May 18, 1861. 

21 Quotofl from the Bloomfield Clarion in the Des Moines Valley Whig (Keo- 
kuk), May 6, 1861. 


a company of mounted rangers .... the expense at- 
tending such force consists in furnishing each member of a 
company with a rifle and sword bayonet valued at from $23 
to $50, and a Colt's revolver valued at $22 to $25." The 
Council Bluffs '^Flying Artillery'' and ''Union Cavalry" 
received a considerable quantity of arms and ammunition. 
The infantry companies complained of neglect. Indeed, 
Lieutenant C. C. Rice of the ''Council Bluffs Guards" spent 
weeks making cartridges for his company. But the artil- 
lery by July had enough ammunition to practice at target 
shooting. And in September there were enough arms on 
the western border to warrant the withdrawal of the Des 
Moines Cavalry from Council Bluffs.^^ 

Other points were not neglected. By June 27th sixty 
muskets had been sent to Page County, forty long-range 
rifles to Taylor County, and muskets to other points. By 
July several hundred arms had been distributed along the 
southern border. "The Governor's efforts to supply the 
border with the means of protection have been highly 
praiseworthy", declared an Iowa editor. The people made 
their own cartridges by the thousands. In Keokuk it was 
said that ' ' all the guns and muskets in the city have been or 
are being cleaned and repaired". In a border paper ap- 
peared the following advertisement: "Wanted, about 75,000 
stand of fire arms, of all sorts, to repair ready for peace or 
war, at the New Gun Making and Repairing Establishment, 
by W. Duncan, on Broadway, opposite City Hotel ".^^ 

The members of all militia companies were required to 

22 Letter from Kirkwood to Mr. Bridgman of Keokuk, May 10, 1861, in 
KirTcwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, p. 178; Des Moines Valley Whig (Keo- 
kuk), May 6, 1861; Lathrop's The Life and Times of Samuel J. KirTcwood, p. 
135; Council Blufs Nonpareil, May 25, June 1, July 20, September 21, 1861. 
See also Council Bluffs Bugle, August 11, 1864. 

23 The Dubuque WeeUy Times, June 27, 1861; Des Moines Valley Whig 
(Keokuk), July 22, 29, 1861; Council Bluffs Nonpareil, April 20, 1861. 


turn in arms, ammunition, and accoutrements. Jesse 
Bowen presented the State with a brass eight-pounder can- 
non and eighty rifles.^^ At Davenport there was a foundry 
owned by Mr. Donahue, who had been ^ ^ occupied two years 
at West Point making cannon balls, bomb-shells, &c, and 
during the Mexican war engaged in making the same mate- 
rials for the use of our army.''^^ It was urged that he 
should now make arms and ammunition for the Iowa 
troops. In October, 1861, the Dubuque Shot Tower was 
putting out one hundred sacks of shot per day.^^ 

In October, 1861, the War Department was still making 
excuses because it was not able to supply artillery and 
small arms for border defense. Money was voted by the 
General Assembly of Iowa at the extra session of 1861 for 
the purchase of five thousand stand of arms, but they had 
not yet been purchased in January, 1862.^^ 

Eventually Grovernor Kirkwood organized companies and 
supplied arms to them in the first and second tiers of coun- 
ties along the southern border, but this work was not com- 
pleted until in 1863. These companies furnished their own 
clothing, horses, and equipments. As late as August 18, 
1862, J osiah B. Grinnell wrote from the southern border to 
Governor Kirkwood: ^^We want arms. Can we not have 
them?" In March, 1863, Governor Kirkwood wrote to the 
War Department : ^ ^ I regard it as a matter of the first and 
most pressing importance to get a supply of arms and am- 
munition." He asked at this time for five thousand stand 

24 Council Blufs Nonpareil, May 4, 1861; Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 43. 

25 Quoted from the Davenport Gazette in the Council Blufs Nonpareil, May 
11, 1861. 

20 The Duhuque Weelcly Times, October 3, 1861, p. 5. 

27 War of the Rchellion: Official Eccords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 574; Report of 
the Adjutant-General of Iowa, 1861, p. 13. 


of arms, accoutrements, and ammunition.^^ They were 
needed to put down expected resistance to the draft and 
compel the payment of taxes. There was still a scarcity of 
arms in southern Iowa at the time of the Tally War'' in 


Throughout the entire summer of 1861 barely enough 
arms were available to supply the Iowa volunteers, and it 
was only after much delay that guns were secured. Where 
are the arms promised to our regiments?", the Adjutant 
General inquired in August. *^Do send us arms for our 
infantry and cavalry.'' The providing of arms for the 
companies who enlisted for Federal service was a big task. 
Guns were scarce throughout the country ; and an enormous 
supply was needed. Although eastern manufacturing 
plants worked at full speed they could not keep pace with 
the demand for arms. Especially in the West was this situ- 
ation felt. Delays were many and when the arms did arrive 
they were unsatisfactory and often unserviceable. The 

28 War of the Eehellion: O^cial Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 561, 562, Vol. 
II, pp. 403, 404, Vol. Ill, pp. 62, 67, 68; letter from Kirkwood to G. W. Devin 
of Ottumwa, February 16, 1863, in Kirlcwood Military Letter Book, No. 5, 
p. 110. 

29Latlirop's The Life and Times of Samuel J. Kirlcwood, p. 248. 

An artillery squad which accompanied the Governor to the scene of this 
skirmish, having no ammunition for their guns, cut up bars and rods of iron 
into inch pieces *'to do duty in the place of canister, grape and solid shot." — 
Lathrop's The Life and Times of Samuel J. Kirlcwood, p. 248. 

It was here, also, that the following occurrence took place. One 'of the artil- 
lerymen was standing guard with his gun in the early morning. ' ' A stranger, 
led by curiosity or as a spy from the Tally camp, came up within speaking 
distance of the guard, and asked him what he had there". The reply was, 

' ' That, sir, by , is a butternut cracker. ' ' — Lathrop 's The Life and Times 

of Samuel J. Kirlcwood, pp. 251, 252. 

In July, 1863, the authorities intercepted a box containing double-barrelled 
rifles made of the most approved pattern", destined for the Knights of the 
Golden Circle. — Duluque Semi-WeeUy Times, July 28, 1863. 


arms that were refused by eastern troops were frequently 
sent to the western companies.^^ 

The call for the first regiment of Iowa volunteers was 
issued on April 15, 1861. This regiment was to serve for 
three months. Calls for additional regiments came in 
steadily throughout the next three years. Most of the 
troops from Iowa were enlisted for three years, although 
some regiments were made up of hundred day men and 
others of men who enlisted for various terms. Iowa fur- 
nished a total of between seventy and eighty thousand 
troops. To arm and equip this number alone was a large 
task at that time. When it is remembered that the Iowa 
troops constituted only a small part of the great Union 
army, it is little wonder that there was delay and confusion 
in the accomplishment of the task.^^ 

For the most part the first two regiments were made up 
of independent, voluntary militia companies which had 
been organized before the war. The companies in existence 
at the outbreak of the war were poorly armed. Scarcely a 
company had a full stand of arms, and the guns they did 
own were in many cases not fit for use in war, although 
they would do for drill purposes. Later companies prior 
to enlistment sometimes used the guns of former companies 
who had been taken into United States service and been 
given a new supply of guns.^^ 

30 War of the Rebellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 407. 

Assistant Secretary of War Scott wrote in September, 1861, to Governor 
Curtin of Pennsylvania that "We shall send the arms you cannot use to the 
West", when that official had protested against some Prussian muskets which 
had been furnished him. — War of the Eebellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, 
Vol. I, pp. 526, 538. Possibly these were the identical four thousand muskets 
which the Iowa troops received later in the same year. — Report of the Ad- 
jutant-General of Iowa, 1861, p. 13. 

81 War of the Rebellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 68, 69; Byers's 
Iowa in War Times, p. 28; Phisterer's Statistical Record of the Armies of the 
United States, pp. 3-11; Briggs's The Enlistment of Iowa Troops during the 
Civil War in The Iovi^a Journal of History and Politics, Vol. XV, p. 373. 

32 I?e« Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), July 1, 1861. 


Especially was difficulty encountered in arming the first 
few regiments from Iowa. The United States government 
agreed to furnish the arms and accoutrements. The arms 
so furnished were distributed through the agency of the 
Adjutant General, who had been required by law to serve as 
Acting Quartermaster General. The First Iowa Eegiment 
was in rendezvous at Keokuk more than a week before 
the time set, and could have been there sooner, but the 

Governor saw no special reason for hurrying them on to 
the rendezvous before the arrival of arms''.^^ 

Arms for seven hundred and eighty men were to have 
been retained at the St. Louis Arsenal when the shipment 
was sent to Springfield, Illinois, but for some reason they 
were not left. On May 10th Governor Kirkwood wrote to 
the Secretary of War that the ^ ^ First Iowa Eegiment is in 
rendezvous at Keokuk, and I hope will soon be supplied 
with arms.'' Earlier in May Captain E. G. Herron had 
been sent by the Governor to Springfield, Illinois, with a 
requisition for five thousand stand of arms. ^^He found 
nothing there but the old flint-lock muskets, which have 
been altered to percussion. There were also bayonets, but 
no scabbards. He very properly refused to touch any of 
them, and returned empty handed. 

The troops at Keokuk lived in daily expectation of their 
arms. On May 17th word came that two thousand stand 
had been ordered from St. Louis. And on Sunday morning, 
May 19th, two thousand of these precious treasures" ar- 
rived from St. Louis, escorted by a company from 

33 The Dubuque WeeMy Times, April 25, 1861 ; Eeport of Adjutant-General 
of Iowa, 1864, p. xiv; Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), May 13, 1861. 

34: War of the Behellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 162, 185; 
Wilkie's The Iowa First: Letters from the War, p. 14. 

Mr. Franc B. Wilkie accompanied the First Eegiment of Iowa Volunteers as 
correspondent for The Dubuque Herald and the New Yorlc Times. The work 
to which reference is made is a collection of his letters to The Dubuque Herald, 
printed in 1861. 

VOL. XVI — 2 


Quincy'', to guard tliein from secessionists. think it 
would be a master stroke of policy to allow the secessionists 
to steal them'', wrote Franc B. Wilkie to the Dubuque 
Herald. ^'They are the *old-fashioned-hrass-mounted-and- 
of-such-is-the-kingdom-of -Heaven' kind that are infinitely 
more dangerous to friend than enemy — will kick further 
than they will shoot, and are appropriately known from 
their awkward peculiarities in this and other respects, 
among our Germans as Kuh-fuss — ^ Cow-foot. ' They were 
brought hither by Col. Curtis for the use of the 2nd Regi- 
ment but were stopped by Lieut. Chambers, and by some 
happy arrangement between him and Curtis, 1000 of them 
have been retained here for the use of the 1st Eegiment. 
Their appearance creates intense disgust in the mind of 
every recruit. 

**Why is it that our Iowa regiments cannot be armed and 
equipped, say one-half as well as the regiments of Illinois! 
All of the latter are armed with the very best arms in use, 
either Sharpe 's or Minie rifles — our men are put off with 
an old rusty machine that is a cross between a blunderbuss 
and a Chinese matchlock, and is one which would excite the 
merriment even of a Digger Indian, unless he happened to 
be behind it."^^ 

^'The bayonets don't shine at all," commented the Des 
Moines Valley Whig, ^'and we learn that the soldiers don't 
much affect the old-fashioned smooth bore. But there is a 
prospect that new patterns will be received before long." 
This prospect was based on the achievement of Colonel 
Samuel R. Curtis, who had been sent to Washington to se- 
cure arms. He returned soon after the middle of May, 
having obtained an order for two thousand guns; while 
cartridge boxes, bayonet scabbards, and waistbands were 

^■^>The J)uhu(jue Jferald, May 17, 1861; Wilkie 's The Iowa First: Letters 
from the War, pp. 24, 25. 


to be made and shipped by express from Pittsburg immedi- 
ately. The above named accoutrements arrived in Keokuk 
the fore part of June, and were put in Burns & Rentgen's 
warehouse. There were enough of them io equip the first 
and second regiments.^^ 

The muskets, however, which were furnished the First 
Iowa Regiment were not replaced.^^ Upon receiving the 
order to move south from Keokuk, one of the men with the 
First Regiment of Iowa Volunteers wrote home: Heaven 
forgive us all our sins if we are to be sent down among 
those rampageous, half -horse, half-alligator ^Border Ruf- 
fians,' with only these old muskets and triangular bay- 
onets ! If we ain't kicked over the borders at the very first 
discharge, it will be through the special interposition of 
Providence — or it will be through the same influence, if 
we are not all dead in 'three weeks from lugging so much 
rusty old iron about the hot fastnesses of Missouri. We 
shall be equally in danger from the muzzles of Missourian 
muskets and the breeches of our own''. An attempt was 
made by a Union regiment in Missouri to supply these men 
with new guns, but nothing came of it. Indeed, the men of 
the First Regiment were doubtless the most illy armed and 
clothed troops that Iowa furnished.^^ 

The story of the arming of later regiments is one of con- 
tinued delay and dissatisfaction. Arms were supposed to 
be supplied to the troops before they left the State, but 
often this result was not accomplished. The Second Iowa 

36De5 Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), May 20, 27, June 10, 1861. 

37 The Governor's Greys of Dubuque were armed with rifled muskets. Prob- 
ably they secured them from private sources before leaving Dubuque. To offset 
the advantage of having superior arms, the Greys were inconvenienced by the 
necessity of running their own bullets to fit them, since they were of a different 
caliber from the rest of the arms. — Wilkie 's The Iowa First : Letters from the 
War, pp. 46, 47. 

38 The Dubuque Herald, June 18, 1861; Wilkie's The Iowa First: Letters 
from the War, p. 65. 


Regiment ^^was placed in rendezvous at Keokuk, and with- 
out arms." This regiment, together with the Third and 
Fourth Regiments, was reported on June 8, 1861, to be in 
rendezvous ^'anxiously awaiting arms.'^ The Third Regi- 
ment left Keokuk without cartridges or cartridge boxes. 

Destitute of all equipment but empty muskets and bay- 
onets, and without means of transportation,'' the Third 
Regiment was on July 1st '^hastened westward more than 
halfway across the state [Missouri].'' Not until August 
23rd were three thousand Improved Muskets" shipped 
' ^ on the J eannie Deans to the Iowa troops in St. Louis and 
Missouri." Minie rifles were to have been furnished.^^ 

Varied were the arms dealt out to the Iowa troops. Many 
of the guns were old flint-lock muskets altered to percus- 
sion.^^ Other troops received rifled muskets, Austrian 
muskets, Prussian muskets, Belgian rifles. Harper's Ferry 
muskets, Spencer's carbines. Sharps carbines, Colt's re- 
volvers, navy revolvers, Whitworth rifles, Colt's revolving 
rifles, Minie rifles, or Enfield rifles. During the year 1862 
the State of Iowa received from the United States govern- 
ment one thousand Austrian rifles (caliber .58) ; twenty- 
seven hundred Austrian rifles (caliber .54) ; ten thousand 

3oByers's Iowa in War Times, pp. 47, 484; War of the Behellion: Official 
Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 261; Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), July 1, 
August 26, 1861; The Gate City (Keokuk), July 1, 1861. 

40 These arms were generally regarded by the soldiers as worthless. A resi- 
dent of Dubuque, who claimed to have ' ' had some experience under Govern- 
ment, in this matter," and who signed himself ''Ordinance", championed 
them and asserted that they were ''as serviceable as any that can be issued 
from the War Department, with the exception, perhaps, of the rifled musket, 
which latter arm requires no inconsiderable experience on the part of the 
soldier". Their propensity to "kick" he explained away by saying that "in. 
the discharge of innumerable guns, during an engagement, it is necessary that 
the soldier feels his to be among the number that have been discharged." A 
little cleaning, polishing, and browning, he declared, would make them "as 
good as if fresh from the national armories". The conviction which his brief 
carries is somewhat dissipated by the orthography of the writer's nom de 
guerre. — The Duhuque Weekly Times, .Tune 27, 1861. 


Enfield rifles (caliber .58) ; fifty-nine hundred Prussian 
muskets (caliber .72) ; nine hundred Prussian rifled mus- 
kets (caliber .69) ; six hundred Springfield muskets (caliber 
,69) ; one thousand Garibaldi rifled muskets (caliber .71) ; 
twelve hundred French rifles (caliber .58) ; twelve hundred 
Colt's revolvers; and twelve hundred sabres, with accoutre- 
ments for all.^^ 

The Enfield rifle was the arm which the soldiers were 
always desirous of securing, since it was one of the best 
guns in the service at the time. It is interesting to note 
that an improved Enfield rifle is the arm used in the present 
war by the English troops and will probably be used by the 
American troops.^^ 

A part of the Fourth Iowa Infantry Regiment received 
muskets while still in rendezvous at Camp Kirkwood, Coun- 
cil Bluffs. The rifles had been stored at Fort Kearny and 
it is said that the order for their delivery was made out by 
Robert E. Lee, who was at that time Chief of Staff to 
Lieutenant General Scott, Chief of the Army. Better arms 
were supplied to the regiment in the field late in September. 
There was also a battery consisting of four twelve-pound 
howitzers connected with the Fourth Regiment.^^ 

The Fifth Iowa Regiment was sworn into service at Bur- 
lington on the 15th, 16th, and 17th of July, 1861. Arms 
were distributed to the men of this regiment just a month 
later, on the way to the front. They, too, were given com- 

41 Beport of the Adjutant-General of Iowa, 1862, Vol. I, pp. xvi, xvii. 

42 There is an interesting Civil War anecdote told in connection with the 
Enfield rifles. One of the nurses in a field hospital ''approached the cot on 
which a wounded soldier of the Massachusetts Fifteenth regiment was lying 
and asked him, ' Is there anything which you think of that you want ? ' ' Yes, ' 
was the quick reply, 'an Enfield rifle.' " Most of the men in his regiment 
were equipped with smooth-bores. — The Dubuque WeeTdy Times, November 28, 

Council Blufs Nonpareil, July 20, August 3, 1861; Byers's Iowa in War 
Times, p. 605; Des Moines Valley Whig, September 23, 1861. 


mon muskets, but with the assurance that other arms 

would be forthcoming in about thirty days. The Sixth 

Iowa received miserable Austrian muskets/' concerning 

which a Dutch member of the regiment said, ' ^ a man might 

be killed more as twelve times before de tam ding would 
shoot ofe.''*4 

The organization of the Seventh Eegimenf occurred soon 
after the battle of Bull Run. Owing to pressing military 
necessity this regiment was sent to the South before it was 
armed. They received their arms at St. Louis, ^^the flank 
companies *A' and 'B' getting the Springfield rifle with 
tape self primers, and the other eight companies received 
the improved ^buck and balP Springfield musket.''*^ This 
regiment was also given eight pieces of artillery.^^ Belgian 
muskets were supplied to the Eighth Regiment at Keokuk 
on its way down the river to St. Louis. These guns were 
received with dissatisfaction by the men. ^ ^Uneven caliber, 
some crooked barrels, locks out of repair ! The boys called 
them 'pumpkin slingers' and pronounced the crooked bar- 
rels adapted to shooting around hills. 

The Eleventh Iowa Regiment, while it has the distinction 
of being ''the first full regiment, completely uniformed, 
armed and equipped, which, as such, 'trod the soil of Iowa'', 
was, nevertheless, unfortunate enough to secure percussion 
lock, smooth-bore muskets.^^ 

44Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 488; The Bubuque Weeldy Times, Febru- 
ary 6, 1862; Bes Moines Valley Whig, October 21, 1861. 

45 Smith 's History of the Seventh Iowa Veteran Volunteer Infantry during 
the Civil War, p. 6. 

40 The Buhuque Herald, July 21, 1861. Six-pound brass howitzers for Iowa 
troops wore made in Omaha by Charles Hendric and furnished at a contract 
price of one thousand dollars each. — The Buhuque Weeldy Times, September 
12, 1861. 

■♦TByors's Iowa in War Times, pp. 495, 496. 

Iowa Historical Record, Vol. T, p. 129; Council Bluffs Nonpareil, Novem- 
ber 9, 1861. 


Within one month after being mustered into service the 
Twelfth Iowa received arms and accoutrements. This regi- 
ment, owing to the persistent effort of Colonel Woods or 
the influence which he had with Hhe powers that be,' . . 
. . was so fortunate that while others — 'the Thirteenth 
Iowa, for instance — was being armed with Harper's Ferry 
muskets altered from old flintlocks, or with Belgian smooth- 
bores, the Twelfth received the very best arms then in the 
service — new Enfield rifles, of which the men were very 
proud.'' The Fourteenth Eegiment was armed by com- 
panies. Three companies had received their arms and were 
on their way to Fort Randall, in Dakota Territory, late in 
October, 1861, while the remaining companies had not re- 
ceived arms late in November. When guns were received 
they were of the poorest sort. W. W. Kirkwood, a nephew 
of Governor Samuel J. Kirkwood, wrote to his uncle from 
Benton Barracks on January 12, 1862, complaining of the 
character of the arms furnished, and asking him to do some- 
thing to remedy the situation. The arms were worthless, 
said the young soldier, who declared that ^Hhere was one to 
my certain knowledge Broken by striking it lightly across 
a pine Box. The barrel broke entirely oif in two places." 
Many of the muskets, he said, burst at the first discharge.^^ 

The members of the Eighteenth Iowa Regiment were 
armed with Austrian rifled muskets upon their arrival in 
St. Louis; while the Twenty-first Iowa was unusually for- 
tunate in the matter of arms. Going into rendezvous the 
25th of August, 1862, all the members of this regiment who 
had not been previously armed were equipped with Enfield 
rifles on the 9th of September. The supply of these arms, 
however, was not lasting. The Twenty-second and Twenty- 

^sBjers's Iowa in War Times, p. 507; Eeed's Campaigns and Battles of the 
Twelfth Eegiment Iowa Veteran Volunteer Infantry, p. 11; The Dubuque 
WeeUy Times, October 31, 1861; The WeeUy Gate City (Keokuk), December 2, 
1861; KirJcwood Correspondence, No. 433. 


fourth Regiments were compelled to drill with wooden guns 
and swords of their own manufacture.^^ 

Indeed, although a requisition for arms for the ^'Temper- 
ance Regimenf — the Twenty-fourth — was issued early 
in August, ' ' the regiment paraded and drilled with wooden 
swords and guns until the middle of October'', when it was 
lucky enough to secure new Enfield rifles. On September 
20th Adjutant General Baker wrote to the Secretary of 
War, asking for arms for ten additional regiments. They 
were almost immediately furnished.^^ 

Enfield rifles were furnished to the men of the Twenty- 
fifth Iowa Regiment on their way down the Mississippi to 
the field of action. Yet to the Thirty-third Regiment were 
issued smooth-bore muskets, which were not exchanged for 
Enfields until some months afterward. And as late as 
December, 1862, Governor Kirkwood wrote to Edwin M. 
Stanton, protesting against the character of arms furnished 
to the Thirty-fifth Iowa Infantry, and asking that they be 
exchanged for serviceable guns''. Later, the Thirty- 
eighth Regiment received satisfactory arms before leaving 
the camp at Dubuque.^^ 

During the early years of the war the guns were so con- 
structed that it was necessary for the men to bite off the 
ends of the cartridges before loading. Indeed, at the time 
of the draft, some of those drafted attempted to escape 
service by having their teeth pulled, thus rendering them 

^oWar of the Eehellion: Ofjficial Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. II, p. 287; The 
Weekly Gate City (Keokuk), August 20, 1862; Dubuque Weelcly Herald, 
August 20, 1862; Crooke's The Twenty-first Begiment of Iowa Volunteer In- 
fantry, p. 13; Jones's Eeminiscences of the Twenty-Second Iowa Volunteer 
Infantry, p. 8; Annuls of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. I, p. 18. 

ci War of the Eehellion: Oficial Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. II, pp. 325, 575, 577; 
Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. I, p. 18. 

r>2 The Weekly Gate City (Keokuk), November 5, 1862; Sperry's History of 
the 33d Iov)a Infantry Volunteer Regiment, p. 3; Kirkwood Military Letter 
Book, No. 5, p. 44; Dubuque Democratic Herald, December 24, 1862. 


incapable of tearing the cartridges. But toward the end of 
the war, muskets were used which made this process un- 
necessary. The rifles used in 1863 hy the Dubuque Union 
Guards, a company which later served as ^'Hundred Days 
Men", were ^^of the Austrian pattern, of which the com- 
pany have one hundred, with all the accompanying equip- 
ments, including 5,000 rounds of ammunition. The guns are 
of the latest improved pattern, and are made so that the 
owner is not obliged to bite off the ends of the cartridges, a 
little instrument accomplishing that work for him, thus 
enabling one to load and fire almost twice as quick as by the 
old method.'^ Other companies of these Hundred Days 
Men" of 1864 were furnished Enfield rifles. Arms were 
seemingly plentiful at this time.^^ 


The cavalry and artillery, while perhaps faring some- 
what better than the infantry, were also subjected to delays 
and disappointments. For some time the members of the 
First Iowa Cavalry were armed only with pistols and 
sabers. The First Iowa Battery was given its first arma- 
ment at Benton Barracks in December, 1861. This con- 
sisted of ^^four 6-pounder guns and two 12-pounder how- 
itzers". Not until April 29, 1864, did the battery receive 
*4ts new armament of six 10-pounder Parrott guns."^* 

The Second Iowa Cavalry in the beginning of its service 
was likewise armed only with sabers and pistols. Later, 
however, the men were more satisfactorily armed, some 
companies with Colt's revolving rifles and some with Sharps 
carbines. The Third Cavalry was much more speedily 

Dubuque Semi-WeeTcly Times, August 11, 1863, June 7, 1864; Burlington 
Daily BawTc-Eye, October 27, 1864; War of the Behellion: Official Eecords, Ser. 
I, Vol. XLI, Pt. 2, p. 757. 

s^Lothrop's A History of the First Begiment lotva Cavalry Veteran Volun- 
teers, p. 43 ; Byers 's Iowa in War Times, pp. 596, 597. 


equipped. By December of 1861 the members of this regi- 
ment were ^ ^ said to be fully armed and equipped with car- 
bines, sabres, and navy revolvers^'. The Fourth Regiment 
of Cavalry was mustered in and under marching orders for 
Fort Leavenworth, and still was without arms late in Janu- 
ary, 1862.^^ 

But not until March, 1862, were arms added to the heavy 
dragoon sabers carried by the Fourth Cavalry. And ^^what 
arms" they were when they were furnished! They were 
described as follows : 

About four hundred men were loaded with "Austrian" rifles, a 
very heavy and clumsy, though rather short, infantry gun, a 
muzzle-loader, with a ramrod. Half the remainder had "Starr's" 
revolver, a five-shooter, percussion-cap and paper-cartridge pistol, 
of a bad pattern and poorly made, while all, or nearly all, received 
a pair of horse-pistols, to be carried in holsters on the pommel of 
the saddle, the smooth-bore, single-barrelled, muzzle-loader used in 
the Mexican war. 

These rifles and revolvers never gained favor in the regiment; 
indeed, it is probable that they did more harm than good, because 
there was a general want of reliance upon them. The Starr re- 
volver caused more fear in the regiment than it ever did among the 
enemy. Its shot was very uncertain, its machinery often failed to 
work, and it had a vicious tendency to go off at a wrong moment. 
The holster-pistols were better thought of. They were found to be 
more effective than the revolvers, and far more easily managed 
than the rifles. Many of them were retained until the Colt's re- 
volvers came, in 1863.^^ 

The Second Regiment of Iowa Cavalry, after it was trans- 
formed, in March, 1864, into the Second Iowa Cavalry 
Veteran Volunteers, was, on the 19th of June, armed with 
Spencer\s Seven Shooting Carbines. This was fhe best arm 

r'f. Pierce's History of the Second Iowa Cavalry, pp. 12, 26, 27, 54, 70; The 
Weclcly Gate City (Keokuk), December 16, 1861; War of the Behellion: Official 
Records, Scr. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 786, 790. 

BO Scott 's The Story of a Cavalry Begiment : The Career of the Fourth Iowa 
Veteran Volunteers, pp. 25, 26. 


in service, carrying a forced ball, and so arranged that the 
mounted trooper could throw fourteen balls from it per 
minute — dismounted, a little more.'^ Some Confederate 
prisoners captured by a squad of the Second Cavalry 
armed with these guns asked to see ^one of the guns you 
all fight with,' and added, ^^you bring them to your shoul- 
der and hold them there, while a continuous stream of lead 
rolls from them into our faces. It is no use for us to fight 
you 'ens with that kind of gun." Later one of the prisoners 
inquired if the cavalrymen loaded Sundays and fired all 
the week.' 

Occasionally the Iowa troops would secure guns from 
captured prisoners or from a store of arms taken in a 
skirmish. The First Iowa Cavalry at one time secured in 
this manner seventy-three wagons, five hundred horses and 
mules, eleven hundred rifles and shot guns, one hundred 
pistols, and commissary stores and ammunition.^^ 


Equipment was even more conspicuously lacking than 
arms in Iowa in 1861, and the difficulty of securing neces- 
sary supplies during the first years of the war was cor- 
respondingly greater. For, while effective arms were not 
an absolute necessity until the battle-field was reached, 
blankets and clothing were indispensable in rendezvous 
camps and on the way to the scene of conflict. And while it 
may be true, as Napoleon suggested, that an army travels 
on its stomach, nevertheless, stout shoes keep the feet from 
dragging. Equipment must be furnished the troops imme- 
diately after enlistment. It is true that the independent 
militia companies which were the first to volunteer had 

57 Pierce's History of the Second Iowa Cavalry, pp. 95, 97, 98. 

58 Lothrop 's A History of the First Begiment Iowa Cavalry Veteran Volun- 
teers, p. 44. See also p. 54. 


uniforms; and the Governor's Greys of Dubuque offered 
their services to the Governor, January 15, 1861, as a fully 
equipped volunteer company ' '.^^ But such uniforms ! They 
were designed for the delight of the ladies when the com- 
pany was on parade, rather than for service at the front. 
Handsome enough were the brave lads in white, red, grey, 
green, blue, and every other hue of the rainbow on Fourth 
of July dress parades ; but their uniforms would not have 
been as fitting had they been exposed to the rain and mud 
and cold which the men were later obliged to endure. 

The Davenport Sarsfield Guards, although organized 
during the money panic of 1858, ^'equipped themselves with 
a handsome uniform ".^^ The other companies of the State 
acted along similar lines. Indeed, these ante-bellum mili- 
tary organizations were, in the main, social organizations. 
Parades and balls were their chief activities and the various 
communities seemed to vie with one another in making 
their own unit most gorgeous. This tendency was evi- 
denced later by the various uniforms worn by the different 
companies making up the first Iowa regiments, many of 
which received their initial uniforms from home town pa- 
triots. Equipment, like arms, was to be furnished by the 
general government before the troops left the State. But 
on their way to and during their stay in the camps of 
rendezvous, the soldiers were to be cared for by the State. 

This was a work which the State might well be expected 
to perform, and one to which the people of Iowa responded 
generously. The State government was handicapped by a 
lack of funds. The war loan bonds were practically un- 
salable. In part the situation was relieved by voluntary 
donations from patriotic citizens, but the strain on the 
State finances was great. Among the first to come to the 

•"'0 War of the EehelUon: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 56. ' 
fio Annals of Iowa (First Series), Vol. I, pp. 161, 162. 


Governor's aid were two citizens of Dubuque. ^'The very 
morning after Sumter was fired on, J. K. Graves & R. E. 
Graves, Ms brother, telegraphed the Governor, saying they 
would claim it an honor and privilege to honor his drafts 
to the extent of thirty thousand dollars ; leaving repayment 
to the pleasure of the state, if it could help equip and send 
the boys to the front.'' W. T. Smith, of Oskaloosa, to- 
gether with other war Democrats, offered aid to the Gov- 
ernor. Private citizens in every town vied with one an- 
other in personal sacrifice to aid in the good cause." 
Solomon Sturges, a Chicago millionaire, offered to loan 
Governor Kirkwood $100,000.^^ Town funds were made up. 
^'At little Brighton, $1,250, cash, was raised in a few min- 
utes from Republicans and Democrats alike, and as much 
more promised, to help feed and clothe the boys who volun- 
teered."^^ Hiram Price and Ezekiel Clark were active in 
raising funds with which to equip the troops. The banks 
of the State, namely the State Bank and its branches, ral- 
lied to the support of the Governor. Kirkwood himself 
^^gave his own personal bonds, pledging all his own prop- 

eiByers's Iowa in War Times, pp. 42, 43; KirTcwood Military Letter Book, 
No. 1, p. 264. 

Later E. E. Graves offered to loan $10,000 to the State on behalf of the 
Dubuque Branch of the State Bank. He agreed to accept payment in State 
bonds at par. — Kirkwood Military Letter Book, No. 1, pp. 2, 259. 

William B. Allison donated fifty dollars to the Governor's Greys, ''to be 
spent by them as their pleasure might dictate. ' ' James C. Patterson gave ten 
dollars to the Keokuk Union Guards. — The Dubuque Weekly Times, April 25, 
1861; Bes Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), April 22, 1861. 

62Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 43. Later, in 1862, the Amana Community 
sent $1000 to Governor Kirkwood for similar purposes. ''We take the lib- 
erty", they wrote, "of sending you enclosed $1000. Our elders or trustees are 
inclined to do something for our beloved Union, and as our conscience on 
religious principles, as you know, prohibits us, like other citizens, from bearing 
weapons against any other men, we beg you to use the $1000 for the relief of 
our sick and wounded soldiers; or, if you think our soldiers in the field are 
more suffering on account of cold weather, you may use it partly for their 
relief." — Iowa City EepuMican, November 19, 1862. 


erty and earnings, many times over, that the first soldiers 
of the state might have shoes to wear, blankets to sleep on, 
and bread to eat/'^^ 

Many of the towns fitted out their own troops with uni- 
forms. At a meeting of the citizens of Fort Madison it was 
voted to instruct the town authorities to appropriate $2000 
for the purpose of equipping the Fort Madison Rifles. All 
over the state, companies were kept together drilling, their 
subsistence furnished by boards of supervisors or by patri- 
otic citizens, some of whom not only helped subsist the 
would-be soldiers, but furnished them uniforms at their 
own expense. ' ' The Decorah Guards were outfitted by the 
citizens of Winneshiek County. Shirts, pants, and caps 
were given to the Pioneer Greys by the townspeople of 
Cedar Falls.^^ 

Governor Kirkwood, recognizing the instant and impera- 
tive need for clothing, at his own risk, sent Ezekiel Clark to 
Chicago to buy cloth for fifteen hundred uniforms. ^^Let 
the material be strong and durable'^, he wrote. But un- 
fortunately the only cloth which could be obtained was 
^ ^ some very poor, thin, sleazy gray satinett, half cotton and 
half wool, only fit for summer wcar".^^ This material was 
thought to be stout enough for uniforms for the men in the 
First Eegiment, whose term of enlistment was for the sum- 
mer months; but ^'the boys, before the march to Spring- 
field in Missouri, had got their thin clothes badly worn out, 

Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. I, pp. 594, 595; Des Moines Valley 
Whig (Keokuk), April 22, 1861; War of the Eehellion: Official Becords, Ser. 
Ill, Vol. I, p. 87; Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 42. 

c4De.9 Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), May 20, June 10, 1861; Byers's Iowa 
in War Times, p. 47. 

65 Byers 's Iowa in War Times, p. 45 ; Lathrop 's The Life and Times of 
Samuel J. Kirkwood, pp. 117, 137. The uniforms of the first three regiments 
from Iowa were gray. In the summer of 1861 General McClellan forbade the 
UHO of gray uniforms by Union troops. — Bes Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), 
September 2, 1861. 


especially beMnd, and many of them took flour sacks and 
made themselves aprons and wore them there instead of in 
front. When Gen. Lyon saw the first one of these on a 
soldier, he ordered him to remove it at once, but when he 
found its removal left the whole fighting force of that sol- 
dier without a ^rear guard' and exposed to the jibes and 
jokes of friend and foe, he ordered it quickly replaced. '"^^ 
The loyal women of the State responded nobly to the task 
of outfitting the first Iowa regiments. They formed * ' Sol- 
diers ' Aid Societies" 'and undertook to cut the cloth pur- 
chased and make it up into uniforms. Especially active 
were the ladies of Dubuque, which city was represented by 
two companies in the First Regiment. The Dubuque tailors 
also lent their aid. Indeed, two hundred and forty-eight 
people helped make uniforms for the two Dubuque com- 
panies and nine days were consumed in the work. No 
wonder, with so many fingers in the pie'', that the product 
was somewhat lacking in the trim, artistic finish of the 
* Tailor shop.' "^"^ The amount of clothing thus made and 
that otherwise furnished to the First Regiment was re- 
ported to the House of Representatives by Governor Kirk- 
wood to be as follows : 

Capt. Herron's Company, Dubuque; each man, hat, frock coat, 
pants, two flannel shirts, two pairs of socks and one pair of shoes. 

Capt. Gottschalk^s Company, Dubuque; blouse instead of coat, 
and other articles same as Capt. Herron's. 

66Lathrop's The Life and Times of Samuel J. Kirlcwood, p. 117. ''So 
ragged an appearance did the First Iowa present on its march to Springfield, 
that Gen. Lyon called them his 'tatterdemalion gypsies,' and when afterward 
they outmarched all his other troops, he called them his 'Iowa Greyhounds.' " 
Franc B. Wilkie wrote home that none of the First Iowa would "run from a 
lady or the enemy — for very shame 's sake they would not dare turn aught 
but their faces to either." Clean shirts, he wrote, would be acceptable, "not 
. . . , so much for the sake of cleanliness as ... . for that of ap- 
pearances — clean shirts hanging out like banners in the rear, look much better 
than dirty ones." — Wilkie 's The Iowa First: Letters from the War, p. 84. 

67 The Dubuque Herald, May 9, 1861. 



Capt. Cook's Company, Cedar Rapids; lia;t, two flannel shirts, 
pants, socks, and shoes, no jacket or coat. 

Capt. Mahanna's Company, Iowa City; hat, jacket, pants, two 
flannel shirts, socks and shoes. 

Capt. Wentz's Company, Davenport; hat, blouse, pants, two 
flannel shirts, socks and shoes. 

Capt. Cummins' Company, Muscatine; cap, jacket, pants, two 
flannel shirts, socks and shoes. 

Capt. Mason's Company, Muscatine; same as Capt. Cummins. 

Capt. Matthies' Company, Burlington; hat, blouse, pants, two 
flannel shirts, socks and shoes. 

Capt. Streaper's Company, Burlington; same as Capt. Matthies. 

Capt. Wise 's Company, Mt. Pleasant ; same as Capt. Matthies. 

I am not sure that all the Companies were furnished with all the 
socks, shoes and shirts. Some of the shoes, I have reason to believe, 
were not of good quality, costing only from $1.25 to $1.50 per pair, 
others I know were good, costing from $2,00 to $2.50 per pair. One 
thousand extra shirts were sent to Keokuk to supply any deficiency 
that may have existed in that particular. Most of the material for 
pants was satinet and not of good quality, costing, as far as the 
same came under my observation, from 40 to 60 cents per yard by 
the quantity. The entire amount expended for Clothing, so far as 
I can give it from the data in my possession, is about $12,000 or 
$13,000, including the one thousand shirts above mentioned. If it 
be desirable in your judgment to have the Companies of this Regi- 
ment uniformed alike, it will be necessary to furnish all with coats 
of the same make, as also with pants, and to furnish an additional 
number of hats or caps. Hats were procured for all, but some pre- 
ferred the cap and procured it, and the cost has been provided for. 
I cannot think that all the Companies need new shoes, as some of 
the shoes furnished were of excellent quality, and have not yet 
been worn more than two or three weeks. 

I am satisfied it is requisite for the comfort of these troops, that 
many of them be furnished with pantaloons and shoes, and some of 
them with socks. As the Second and Third Regiments will be 
clothed throughout alike, it would, no doubt, be very gratifying to 
the First Regiment to be placed in the same position, and it will 
afford me much pleasure to carry out whatever may be your wishes 
in that regard. ^'^ 

Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
TI, j>[). 413, 41.'>. 


In response to this suggestion, the General Assembly by 
joint resolution authorized Governor Kirkwood to outfit the 
First Eegiment in the same manner as the Second and 
Third Regiment were clothed. He telegraphed to Mer- 
rill, who was in Boston: Furnish one thousand more. 
Pants, Coats, and Shoes, same as contracted for, at same 
prices These outfits cost about fifteen dollars per man.^^ 

The following picturesque account is given of the Gov- 
ernor's Greys when they donned their first uniforms: 

They are admirable fits, all of them, except say eighty or a hun- 
dred .... A majority of the boys are able to get their 
pantaloons from the floor by buttoning the waistbands around their 
necks — others accomplish this desirable result by bringing the 
waistbands tight up under the arms and rolling them up six or 
eight inches at the bottom. To be sure this is a little inconvenient 
in some respects — a fellow has to take off his belts, then his coat, 
and then ascend one story before he can reach his pockets, and 
after reaching them they are so deep that one has to take the pants 
off entirely before he can reach the bottom. Each pocket will hold 
a shirt, a blanket and even the wearer himself if at any time he 
finds such a retreat necessary. 

And the coats fit beautifully — almost in fact as well as the pants. 
To be sure half of them are two feet too large around the waist, and 
almost as much too small around the chest — but then these two 
drawbacks admirably offset each other. In the cases of fifteen or 
twenty of them the top of the collar is but a trifle above the small of 
the wearer's back, and in the cases of about as many more the same 
article is a few inches above the head of their owners. The same 
collar also in some cases terminates beneath each ear, and in many 
others it sweeps away around in a magnificent curve, forming a 
vast basin whose rim is yards distant from the neck of its possessor. 
And the sleeves, too, have here and there a fault — some are so 
tight under the arms that they lift one up as if he were swinging 
upon a couple of ropes that pass underneath his armpits — others 
strike boldly out and do not terminate their voluminous course till 

Q^Laws of Iowa, 1861 (Extra Session), p. 35; Shambaugh 's Messages and 
Proclainatio7is of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. II, p. 421; KirTcwood Military 
Letter BooTc, No. 1, p. 254. 

VOL. XVI — 3 


at a distance of several inches beyond the tips of his fingers, while 
others conclude their jonrney after marching an inch or so below 
the elbows. 

Nevertheless, the work of the women was appreciated. 
The Grovernor^s Greys adopted the following resolution: 
Head- Quarters, G. Greys, Co. I, 1st Reg. I. S. M., 
Verandah Hall, Keokuk, May 15, 1861 

At a meeting of the company the following resolutions were 
unanimously adopted : 

Whereas, The matrons and maidens of Dubuque, fired with the 
same noble patriotism and enthusiasm as inspired those of '76, and 
emulating their noble example, have left their daily avocations of 
business or pleasure, to unite in aiding us to go forth properly 
accoutred to meet the enemies of our country ; therefore 

Resolved, That we appreciate with the livliest emotions of grati- 
tude that self-sacrificing patriotism which flowers indigenous in the 
breast of woman, and has prompted them to this act of kindness 
toward us. 

Resolved, That the consciousness that we shall daily carry with 
us the smiles and the prayers, the hopes and the fears of so many 
lovely faces and warm hearts, will strengthen our rougher bosoms 
to endure with patience the hardships, and courage to meet boldly 
the dangers that may oppose us, while fighting the battles of our 

Resolved, That these uniforms, into which so fair hands have 
woven so many and so kind wishes, will be an impenetrable webb to 
the entrance of traitors or cowardly thoughts and a sacred remem- 
brancer of those for whose protection we are fighting. 

Resolved, That the coats shall be our coats of arms, that they 
shall never be turn coats, that they will always remind us of the 
petti-coats, and that while we wear the pants we shall always pant 
for honor, and hope to make the ladies partici-pants of that hour. 

Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be forwarded to the 
President of the Ladies' Volunteer Aid Association and to the 
daily papers of Dubuque. 

F. J. Herron, Capt. Co. I. 

CiiAHiyES N. CiiARK, Clerk of Co. I. 
70 Wilkie's The Iowa First: Letters from the War, pp. 21, 22. 


Governor Kirkwood also appreciated the services of the 
women of the State, for he wrote the following letter to 
Dubuque : 

Executive Office, Des Moines, Iowa, 
May 17th, 1861 
Mrs. A. Gillespie, Sec'y, (&c., Dubuque, Iowa: 

Dear Madam : — Through the attention of D. N. Cooley, Esq., 
I am informed of the voluntary services rendered by yourself and 
other ladies of Dubuque, in fitting- out the two companies of volun- 
teers from your city. 

I can not allow the occasion to pass without expressing my sin- 
cere thanks for this practical display of the patriotism of the ladies 
of Dubuque. 

You have set a noble example in thus coming forward in the 
time of our need, and have shown us by this patriotic offering to 
the welfare of our gallant soldiers, that it needs, but the occasion to 
reproduce the heroines of 76. With the request that you will 
convey to each and every one of the ladies connected with you in 
this good work, my assurance, that your general assistance will be 
fully appreciated by the people of the State, I beg to subscribe 
myself, most respectfully, 

Your obedient servant, 

Samuel J. Kirkwood.'^ 1 

The women of Iowa rendered valuable service through- 
out the war in making havelocks, lint, bandages, towels, 
needle books, and various kinds of hospital stores for the 
soldiers. And, indeed, the uniforms made by the women 
fitted as well as many of the tailored uniforms. The suits 
furnished to the Twenty-second Eegiment in September, 
1862, ^'were most ridiculous misfits, some had to give their 
pants two or three rolls at the heels, others had shirts much 
too large which were, therefore, baggy, while others had to 
place paper in their hats so they would not slip down over 

71 TTie Dubuque WeeMy Times, May 23, 1861; Wilkie's The Iowa First: 
Letters from the War, p. 26; KirTcwood Military Letter Bool, No. 1, p. 142. 


their ears/' **Our blouses are somewhat abbreviated,'' 
was written of the clothing furnished to the hundred day 
men of 1864, *^and our gunboats ^ as we call our shoes, make 
up the size which is lacking in our blouses — presenting a 
most comical appearance. 


There was much actual suffering among the men of the 
early regiments because of lack of equipment. Great diffi- 
culty was encountered in securing blankets for the men. 
They could not be bought readily in the East and there was 
not a sufficient quantity on hand within the State. Many of 
the companies did not have enough blankets to go around, 
and one company of the Second Eegiment had ''nary blan- 
ket.'' Patriotic citizens donated blankets by the dozen, 
some of the companies being supplied before they left home 
for the place of rendezvous. In fact, in October, 1861, 
Adjutant General Baker published an order requesting all 
officers who were sending or bringing recruits to make 
known to their men the importance of bringing along at 
least one good blanket, comfort or quilt, for each volunteer. 
Captain D. B. Clarke's company marched clear across the 
State in December, 1861, from Council Bluffs to Keokuk 
with only such blankets as the citizens of their own com- 
munity could supply to them. In one part of the State, a 
^'little trouble was had by Mr. Allison in buying blankets 
with Iowa bonds, for use of the men so rapidly volunteer- 
ing. . . . Adjt. Genl. Baker, sent him word to ask once 
more for blankets, and if not forthcoming, some troops 
would be sent at once to that part of Iowa, and Hhe reason 
found out.' The blankets were soon bought now, in abun- 

"J^ Council Bluffs Nonpareil, August 24, 1861; The Dubuque WeeTcly Times, 
April 25, .July 4, 1861; Burlington Daily IlawJc-Eye, June 25, 1861; Jones's 
Reminiscences of the Twenty-second Iowa Volunteer Infantry, pp. 8, 9; Du- 
huque Semi-WeeJcly Times, June 7, 1864. 


dance/' In August, 1862, the Governor was still appealing 
for blankets. He requested ten thousand blankets from the 
War Department to equip the men coming into rendezvous. 
He could furnish fifteen regiments but had blankets for 
only five. ''The weather grows cold,'' he said, ''and our 
men suffer for want of clothing and blankets. "^^ 

The scarcity of equipment and the slowness with which 
the government acted were a drawback to the service. ' ' It 
would much hasten matters", wrote Governor Kirkwood, 
"if clothing and equipments could be sent to deliver as com- 
panies are mustered in. The delay in furnishing these to 
other regiments discourages enlistments." In 1862 the 
lack of blankets made it impossible for the regiments to be 
in rendezvous at the appointed time. The First Iowa Regi- 
ment did not get army uniforms until after the term of 
enlistment expired and the men were on their way home. 
Some of the other States seemed to be treated better than 
Iowa. One of the men of the Seventh Eegiment wrote home 
from Bird 's Point in the fall of 1861 that ' ' it makes quite a 
difference whether a regiment hails from Iowa or from 
Illinois. Shoulder strap officials recognize the difference 
between Hawkeyes and Suckers. It has been with difficulty 
that our claims at the Quartermaster 's and pay department 
could be recognized until Illinois regiments had been at- 
tended to first. "'^4 


The first three regiments, when assembled at Keokuk, 
presented an appearance resembling a "crazy quilt". One 

73 Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), May 27, 1861; The Dubuque Herald, 
May 3, 9, 1861; Burlington Daily HawTc-Eye, August 14, 1861; Council Blufs 
Nonpareil, October 26, November 30, 1861; Byers's Iowa in War Times, pp. 
59, 60; War of the Behellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. II, pp. 400, 417, 

74 TFar of the Behellion: Opcial Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 499, Vol. II, p. 
486; O'Connor's History of the First Begiment of Iowa Volunteers, p. 13; 
The Duluque WeeUy Times, November 7, 1861. 


company was uniformed in navy blue shirt and grey pants, 
another in grey jacket and black striped pants, while still 
another had ' ^ a dark blue coat, with green trimmings, light 
blue pants and fatigue caps of dark blue/'^^ Other and 
better uniforms were contracted for by the State. Samuel 
Merrill of Clayton County took the contract for three thou- 
sand ''full suits or uniforms, including shirts, drawers, 
shoes, caps and stockings agreed to have them 

ready within thirty days from the date of contract, an 
agreement which he fulfilled. The manufacturer in Boston 
kept a force busy nights and Sundays in order to get them 
done in time. The uniforms for the Third Regiment were 
sent by express and reached their destination before the 
arrival of those for the First and Second Eegiments, which 
were sent by freight. These uniforms would have been 
provided sooner, but Governor Kirkwood could not get a 
response from the War Department to the question of 
whether or not the State would be expected to furnish uni- 
forms. As it was, some of the clothing made close connec- 
tions. The First and Second Eegiments had left Keokuk 
before their uniforms arrived; while the uniforms for the 
Third Eegiment reached Keokuk the night before the men 
left for Hannibal, Missouri. It had been remarked that if 

75 Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), June 10, July 1, 1861. 

76 The Dubuque Weeldy Times, July 4, 1861. The first contract entered into 
was for: 

' ' 2,000 Gray, all wool frock coats. 
"2,000 Gray, all wool pants. 
"2,000 Gray Felt hats. 
"4,000 Gray, all wool flannel shirts. 
"4,000 Gray, all wool flannel drawers. 
"4,000 pairs all wool knit socks. 
"2,000 pairs best army brogans. 

"Being 1 hat, 1 coat, 1 pair pants, 2 shirts, 2 pairs drawers, 2 pairs socks 
and 1 pair shoes for each man, at the price of twenty-one dollars for each 
man" in the Second and Third regiments. Those for the First were ordered 
later. — Hhambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, 
Vol. ir, p. 421. 


the regiment left without their new clothing, ^Hhey could 
only rely on scaring the secessionists to death by their 
appearance. ''"^^ 

The Seventh Iowa left for the front before it received 
uniforms or equipment. This regiment drew no overcoats. 
Rubber blankets and ponchos were not furnished to the 
troops at that time, so the men used their gray woolen 
blankets for both raincoats and overcoats."^^ 

There was, however, an occasional break in the monoto- 
nous record of delay. Army overcoats were distributed to 
the Second Regiment as early as September 27, 1861. The 
uniforms for the Twelfth Regiment were unloaded at Du- 
buque before the regiment left that city. Credit was given 
to William B. Allison ^^for obtaining the uniforms thus 
early." The members of the Nineteenth Regiment, when 
they left the State for St. Louis, were in possession of 

superb equipments The Twenty-second Iowa and the 
Thirtieth Iowa were speedily equipped upon their mobiliza- 
tion. The Forty-second Regiment received '^overcoats, 
under-clothes, hats, feathers, shoes, bugles, small drums 
and other trimmings'' before leaving Dubuque. At one 
period in the history of the Thirty-fourth Regiment the men 
were in such good condition and so well equipped that in a 
prize drill with five of the best companies in the division, 
this regiment stood first in some respects and second in the 

When the equipment furnished by the Federal govern- 

77Z)es Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), June 10, 24, July 1, 1861; War of the 
Eedellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 221; The Dubuque Herald, July 
3, 1861. 

78 Smith's History of the Seventh Iowa Veteran Volunteer Infantry, pp. 6, 7. 

79Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), October 7, 1861; The Dubuque WeeUy 
Times, October 17, 1861; The WeeUy Gate City (Keokuk), September 10, 
1862; Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 540; Barnett's History of the Twenty- 
second Eegiment Iowa Volunteer Infantry, p. 1; Dubuque Democratic Herald, 
December 17, 1862; Clark's The Thirty-fourth Iowa Eegiment, p. 19. 


ment did arrive, there was often a lack of system in its de- 
livery. ^^The clothing and camp and garrison equipage [of 
the Eighth Eegiment] were distributed in the following 
generous manner: Being drawn by the regimental quarter- 
master, they were deposited in a pile on the parade ground, 
and each company commander directed to march his men to 
the place, where they were supplied. Company officers 
made no requisitions and the quartermaster took no re- 

Although clothing was so scarce, there were a few scape- 
graces among the troops who would sell the clothing and 
equipments issued to them for whiskey and the like. In 
December, 1861, the Fifteenth Regiment was drawn up for 
inspection, and each man required to show all his plun- 
der'^, the object being to find out who were the culprits. 
Finally, the War Department issued an order prohibiting 
soldiers from selling or giving away clothing, arms, or 
equipments. Occasionally clothing was stolen from the 

When the uniforms were issued in due season to a regi- 
ment, there was often a delinquency in some other respect. 
Thus, although the uniforms of the Second Regiment gave 
satisfaction, the knapsacks were so damaged that they had 
to be rejected. Perhaps the one situation which caused the 
greatest discomfort to the soldiers was the lack of shoes. 
At one time ^'only 25 men in Company H [First Regiment] 
were able to do camp duty for want of shoes. Arrange- 
ments were made by the Company last week for 82 pairs of 
shoes on their own account. ' ' ^ ^ There is some neglect some- 
where by somebody in furnishing the volunteers'^, was the 

80 Bycrs 's Iowa in War Times, p. 496. 

Si The Weekly Gate City (Keokuk), December 16, 1861, January 20, 1862; 
Anamosa Eureka, November 20, 1863; Dubuque Semi-Weekly Times, August 7, 


bitter comment. *^It is fortunate they enlisted in summer 
or the State and national government would let them freeze 
to death. The shoes that were issued were many times 
poor in quality. When the Second Regiment received 
shoes, one man testified that he ^^saw several of those men, 
that same day, with those same shoes on their feet, and 
holding in their hands the heels, which had already dropped 
off from them." Many members of the Fourth Eegiment 
were in camp in Council Bluffs without shoes. Poor shoes 
and scant clothing helped to raise the mortality rate of the 
Twelfth Regiment. 

Lack of shoes was a source of constant trouble through- 
out the period of the war. The long, hard marches soon 
wore out the shoes ; and there was little chance of their be- 
ing repaired or replaced. Many are the tales of tired and 
bleeding feet and footprints marked by blood. Many sol- 
diers bound pieces of rawhide onto their feet. Several of 
the men of the Sixth Regiment marched with Sherman to 
Knoxville, barefooted. Gloves and mittens, too, were lack- 
ing. Captain Kittle 's company [Fifteenth Regiment] ap- 
peared at dress parade without gloves or mittens, even in 
the coldest days.''^^ 


Despite the fact that equipment in general was scarce 
and difficult to obtain, the baggage wagons of some of the 
companies in the early days of the war would have rivalled 
the impedimenta trains which always accompanied the 
armies of Caesar. Before the war was over, however, the 
Iowa troops learned that heavy equipments were a hind- 
rance rather than an aid. The size of the equipment trains 

82Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), July 15, 1861; The Dubuque Herald, 
June 2, 18, 1861, July 30, 1862; Byers's Iowa in War Times, pp. 71, 72, 498, 
522, 524, 592; The Dubuque WeeMy Times, January 23, 1862; The Weekly 
Gate City (Keokuk), December 16, 1861. 


is suggested by the fact that at one time the Confederate 
forces captured thirty-five baggage wagons of the Twenty- 
first Iowa Regiment. Each company of the Eighth Regi- 
ment *Svas allowed two six-mule teams with three for 
regimental headquarters. . . . Tents, axes, hatchets 
and the knapsacks of the weak were piled into these wagons 
till they could hold no more. ' ^ The Twelfth Regiment was 
outfitted with '^sl full supply of camp and garrison equip- 
age, including Sibley tents, heavy mess chests, axes, spades, 
picks, with kettles and pans innumerable, and an immense 
wagon train consisting of twelve wagons, each drawn by six 
mules; two ambulances, each drawn by four horses. In 
fact, the regiment set out ^^with more baggage and a larger 
train than would have been allowed three years later for the 
whole 16th Army Corps ' Without any doubt, ^ Wery little, 
if any, of the heavy camp and garrison equipage first set 
up by the regiment at Smithland survived the first summer 
campaign, if, indeed, any of it survived the battle of 

These immense trains of baggage were necessitated in 
part by the fact that such things as tents and mess chests, 
later furnished in individual sizes and carried by the men, 
were, at first, in a form which the men could not carry. 
Instead of individual mess kits there were company mess 
kits, containing tin plates, cups, spoons, knives, and forks 
for each man. Each chest contained the mess kits of six- 
teen men. But ^Hhe contents of the mess chest was soon 
divided up, each man carrying his own plate, cup, knife and 
spoon in his haversack with his rations ".^^ The first tents, 
too, were of the Sibley pattern, invented by General Sibley 

83 Dubuque Democratic Herald, December 3, 1 862 ; Byers 's Iowa in War 
Times, p. 496; Reed's Campaigns and Battles of the Twelfth Eegiment, pp. 
11, L3. 

84 Rood 'h Campaigns arid Battles of the Twelfth Megiment, pp. 12, 13. 


and modeled after the Indian tepee. They were cone- 
shaped, about sixteen feet across at the base and supported 
by a pole in the center which had an iron tripod foot. The 
top of the pole supported an iron ring about one foot in 
diameter, to which the cloth of the tent was attached, thus 
leaving an opening one foot across at the apex of the tent 
for ventilation. Each tent accommodated sixteen men, who 
slept with their heads toward the outer edge of the tent. 
There was room in the center for a fire. But these tents 
were too heavy and unwieldy for active service, and soon 
gave place to the small wedge tent, which in turn was sup- 
planted by the ^ ^shelter", or ^^pup" tent, just large enough 
for two men, and so arranged that each man could carry 
half a tent. When these tents were used it was not neces- 
sary to await the wagons before camp could be made.^^ 


Very different from the present-day mobilization of 
troops in the great concentration camps were the methods 
employed in transporting troops to, and caring for them in, 
the rendezvous camp of 1861 and 1862. It is true that the 
railways of the day offered to carry free all volunteer 
companies of troops whose services were accepted by the 
Governor, but the mileage of Iowa railroads in 1861 was 
very small, and most of the troops were compelled to march 
overland, or travel by stage at least a part of the way. 
Some companies, of course, were carried down the Missis- 
sippi Eiver by boats. Regiments were raised by squads 

85 Reed's Campaigns and Battles of the Twelfth Eegiment, pp. 12, 13. The 
Third Cavalry was provided with Sibley tents — Des Moines Valley Whig 
(Keokuk), October 14, 1861 — but the Sixth Cavalry was supplied ''a small, 
inferior tent". — Dubuque Democratic Herald, March 25, 1863. Another style 
of tent was used by some of the regiments — the wedge tent. — Jones's Bem- 
iniscences of the Thirty-second Iowa Volunteer Infantry, p. 10. 

The Sibley tents and the ''pup" tents are the two most commonly used in 
army and militia camps at the present time. 


and companies over the entire State, and those which 
marched to rendezvous, especially, underwent many hard- 
ships.^^ Scantily clothed, often without tents, and many of 
them barefooted, they tramped through mud and mire, 
stumbled over frozen clods, and slept without covering in 
the rain and sleet. A Des Moines company traveled over- 
land to Council Bluffs in coaches of the Western Stage- 
coach Company at the price of $4.00 a passenger.^^ 

Those who were transported down the Mississippi River 
at times fared little better. Herded on to open barges, with 
snow falling, the wind sweeping down the river, and the 
temperature hovering about the freezing mark, the troops 
were chilled to the bone. One commander refused such 
transportation and marched his men back to camp until 
something better could be arranged. And yet Adjutant 
General Baker was very attentive to the care given Iowa 
troops. Even the smallest details were watched. A Mis- 
sissippi River steamboat company carrying soldiers under 
contract wished also to take on freight. *^Yes,'' tele- 
graphed Baker, ''take the freight on if you wish to, but if 
you do, you take no Iowa soldiers.'' Some of the hardships 
endured on these mobilization marches and in the camps 
were almost as great as those suffered later in the field.^^ 


Tents were an absolute necessity to troops which were 
raised in all parts of the State. And yet many of the com- 

The Dubuque Weekly Times, April 25, 1861; Byers's Iowa in War Times, 
p. 43; War of the Behellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. II, p. 171. 

Council Bluffs Nonpareil, July 20, 1861. At the very outset of the war, 
three companies of United States troops which had been ordered east from 
Fort Randall had to be transported across Iowa, via Des Moines and Daven- 
port, "Owing to the fact that the management of the Hannibal & St. Joseph 
Railroad, at the dictation of the people along the line of the road, refuses to 
transport them across Missouri". — Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 4, 1861. 

Reed's Campaigns and Battles of the Twelfth Regiment, p. 9; Byers's 
Iowa in War Times, p. 58. 


panies did not have them. In the first months of the war 
tents could not be secured from Washington, but orders 
were given to get them wherever they could be found. As 
late as June 23, 1862, Adjutant General Baker wrote to 
Secretary Stanton that * ' tents are indispensable .... 
Let me have the tents [for the Eighteenth Regiment] imme- 
diately. Are they on the way r^^^ 

Even upon arrival at the place of rendezvous the first 
few regiments were supplied only with tents. Indeed, they 
could not go into camp upon arrival, but were housed in 
empty halls, store buildings, and the like until tents were 
secured. The Governor's Greys of Dubuque upon their 
arrival in Keokuk were located in *^the U. S. Court House'', 
and the other companies were given quarters in a large 
brick building in the center of the town. The bunks were 
filled with clean straw and the quarters were very satisfac- 
tory; in fact more comfortable than those provided later in 
camp. For then seven men were squeezed into a small tent 
and no straw or hay was allowed to the men to lie on.^^ 

Barracks were provided for later companies, although 
they were always very rough structures and not always 
snugly built. The lumber was furnished by the govern- 
ment; and the actual work of construction was often done 
by the troops themselves. Some of the barracks were con- 
structed of pine lumber, others of logs, plastered in the 
interstices ; some were shingled, while others were not ; and 
some were heated, although most of them were not. The 
ordinary barrack was twenty by fifty feet in dimensions, 
and housed one company. There were some double bar- 
racks for two companies. They were built without floors, 

89 2)es Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), May 20, 1861; War of the Behellion: 
Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. II, p. 171. 

90 Wilkie 's The Iowa First : Letters from the War, p. 16 ; Des Moines Valley 
Whig (Keokuk), May 27, 1861. 


windows or chimnies ' and ^^with two platforms, one above 
the other, each about twelve feet wide, extending the whole 
length of the building, each platform intended to give sleep- 
ing accommodations for fifty men, twenty-five on each side, 
heads together in the middle/' Of the barracks for one 
regiment it was estimated that the expense of building was 
about two dollars per man.^^ There is evidence that later 
barracks were more comfortable. It was said that those 
erected for the Eighth Cavalry Regiment would ''be supe- 
rior to any that have heretofore been erected in this State. 
They will be built in the most substantial manner, and fitted 
with all the improvements for comfort and cleanliness 
which experience has suggested during the war. ' ' The bar- 
racks erected in 1863 at Camp McClellan for the conscripts 
were ' ' made of bran new lumber, with excellent ventilation 
and comfortable bunks.'' The tables were put up in the 
open, and ''consisted of a plank about a foot wide, and six- 
teen feet long, with stakes driven in the ground for legs".^^ 


The situation with regard to the rations dealt out to the 
Iowa troops was no different than that with respect to the 
other things furnished. Undoubtedly many of the com- 
panies received proper and sufficient food over considerable 
periods of time, but there were others who did not, and 
these latter instances, of course, have been emphasized. As 
a matter of fact, the army rations were fixed by law. 
"Twenty-two ounces of bread or flour, or one pound of 
hard bread .... fresh beef shall be issued . . . . 
when practicable, in place of salt meat; beans and rice or 

01 Spcrry's Ilislory of the S.3d Iowa Infantry, p. 2; Lothrop's A History of 
the First Regiment Iowa Cavalry, p. 34; Roed's Campaigns and Battles of the 
Tv)elfth Regiment, pp. 3, 4; The Dubuque Weeldy Times, December 19, 1861. 

Duhuque Semi-Weekly Times, July 31, December 8, 1863; Smith's History 
of the Seventh Iowa Veteran Volunteer Infantry, pp. 5, 6. 


hominy . . . . and one pound of potatoes per man 
shall be issued at least three times a week, if practicable; 
and when these articles cannot be issued in these propor- 
tions, an equivalent in value shall be issued in some other 
proper food, and a ration of tea may be substituted for a 
ration of coffee".®^ In the Eighth Iowa Eegiment the first 
issue of hard tack nearly created insurrection." Later 
the men came to thank their stars that they had even hard 
tack and its companion ration — ^^sow bosom" — to eat. 
Many were the days when whole companies went without a 
bite to eat. ^ ' Nothing but beans one meal and a small piece 
of side-meat for the next" is a representative entry in the 
journals of many of the soldiers. 

The first companies, while in rendezvous camps, were 
regaled with every kind of gustatory luxury in addition to 
substantial eatables. But in spite of this fact at times there 
was a scarcity of food, especially potatoes. Eggs were 
plenty and sold at six dozen for a quarter.^* In 1862 and 
1863 individuals and Soldiers^ Aid Societies were kept busy 
supplying vegetables and other food supplies to the troops 
in the field and to the sick in the hospitals. The name of 
Mrs. Annie Wittenmyer stands at the head of the list of 
those active in this work. Early in 1863 she sent out an 
appeal for ^'potatoes, onions, corn-meal, dried fruit, eggs, 
butter, cheese, krout, cranberries, dried rusks, beer, ale, 
horseradish, pepper, spice, dried berries, pickles, ginger 
snaps, soda crackers, codfish, anything that will afford nu- 
trition, or variety ".^^ 

93 War of the Eehellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 399. 

9*Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 496; Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), 
June 10, 17, July 1, 1861; Wilkie's The Iowa First: Letters from the War, p. 
38; Burlington Daily HawTc-Eye, June 4, 1861; The Dubuque Herald, May 14, 

95 Dubuque Semi-WeeUy Times, September 8, 1863 ; Kirkwood Military Let- 
ter Boole, No. 6, pp. 72, 73; The WeeMy Gate City (Keokuk), March 4, 1862. 


Of one thing there seems to have been no lack among the 
early regiments : beer and other liquors were supplied by 
friendly citizens in great quantities. **The friends of all 
the companies are extremely liberal in one particular re- 
spect .... and that is in sending in supplies of 
liquors'', wrote Franc B. Wilkie in an account of the First 
Iowa Eegiment. Every express that comes in — every 
company that arrives, brings .... a big supply of 
drinking materials. Half or more of the carts in Keokuk 
are constantly engaged in hauling these supplies into camp. 
They come in the shape of a ten gallon keg of whiskey — 
a ^choice bottle of old brandy' and a ^nice bottle of cocktail' 
— a couple of kegs of lager — in short, in all shapes, from 
all parts of the State ".^^ 

The regimental and company flags were quite uniformly 
gifts of the home communities, and very often were the 
handiwork of the women. Sometimes complimentary equip- 
ment and regimentals were also presented to the officers.^''" 


Some of the cavalry regiments were unusually well 
equipped. The horses, arms, and accoutrements of the 
First Iowa Cavalry Regiment were said to be of ^ * quite re- 
markable excellence". In December, 1861, the Third Iowa 
Cavalry was ^Hhe largest and best mounted body of men" 
at Benton Barracks. It contrasted very decidedly with the 
Third Michigan Cavalry. The latter was said to be worse 
off in the matter of horses than Falstaff 's regiment was for 

oc Wilkie's The Iowa First: Letters from the War, pp. 39, 40, 
n7 Annals of Iowa (First Series), Vol. I, p. 135. Scott's Story of the Thirty- 
Second Iowa Infantry Volunteers, p. 34; Barney's Eecollections of Field Ser- 
vice with the Twentieth Iowa Infantry Volunteers, p. 19 ; Lothrop 's A History 
of the First Begiment Iowa Cavalry, pp. 19, 21, 22; Pierce's History of the 
Second Iowa Cavalry, p. 11; Dubuque Democratic Herald, January 7, 1863; 
Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), June 10, 1861. 


shirts; there's but one horse in the whole regiment, and 
that's a mule!''9« 

The big task was to secure horses that were acceptable. 
To some companies horses were furnished by the govern- 
ment ; while to soldiers who owned their horses forty cents 
per day was paid for the use of their mounts. Cavalry 
horses were required to be fifteen hands and one inch high, 
and from five to nine years old. The Fourth Iowa Cavalry 
secured a full supply of remarkably good horses. They 
were purchased and examined under the personal super- 
vision of Colonel Porter. He took especial pride in mount- 
ing his men. ^^He assigned the horses to the several com- 
panies in different colors. Many companies, of course, were 
mounted upon bays. The next highest number were on 
sorrels, and the next on browns. But Company A had 
grays, and Company K blacks .... The Eegimental 
Band .... all rode fine large roans. There was a 
continued effort made during the early part of the service 
of the regiment to maintain this arrangement of the colors, 
fresh horses being distributed, as far as possible, in accord- 
ance with it; but the difficulty of obtaining horses steadily 
increased, and the maintenance of the colors became im- 

During the early months of the war the cavalrymen car- 
ried an immense amount of equipment, as is shown in the 
following description : 

Mounted upon his charger, in the midst of all the paraphernalia 
and adornments of war, a moving- arsenal and military depot, he 
must have strack surprise, if not terror, into the minds of his 
enemies. Strapped and strung over his clothes, he carried a big 

98 The Dubuque Weelly Times, November 21, 1861; The Weel'ly Gate City 
(Keokuk), December 16, 1861. 

99Lothrop's A History of the First Begiment Iowa Cavalry, p. 31; Tha 
Duluque Herald, July 21, August 6, 1861; Anamosa EureJca, October 31, 1862; 
Scott's The Story of a Cavalry Eegiment, p. 22. 



sabre and metal scabbard four feet long, an Austrian rifle or a 
heavy revolver, a box of cartridges, a box of percussion caps, a tin 
canteen for water, a haversack containing rations, a tin coffee-cup, 
and such other devices and traps as were recommended to his fancy 
as useful or beautiful. The weight of all this easily reached or 
exceeded twenty-five pounds. The army clothing was heavy, and, 
with the overcoat, must have been twenty pounds. So this man, 
intended especially for light and active service, carried on his body, 
in the early part of his career, a weight of nearly fifty pounds. 
When he was on foot he moved with a great clapping and clanking 
of his arms and accoutrements, and so constrained by the many 
bands crossing his body that any rapid motion was absurdly im- 
possible. When he was mounted, his surrounding equipments were 
doubled in number, and his appearance became more ridiculous. 
His horse carried, fastened to the saddle, a pair of thick leather 
holsters with pistols, a pair of saddle-bags filled with the rider's 
extra clothing, toilet articles, and small belongings, a nose-bag, 
perhaps filled with corn, a heavy leather halter, an iron picket-pin 
with a long lariat or rope for tethering the horse, usually two 
horse-shoes with extra nails, a curry-comb and horse-brush, a set of 
gun-tools and materials for the care of arms, a rubber blanket or 
poncho, a pair of woollen blankets, a blouse, a cap or hat, and such 
other utensils and articles of clothing or decoration as the owner 
was pleased to keep. This mass of furniture, with the saddle, would 
weigh in most cases seventy pounds. So, in the first marches, the 
unfortunate horse was compelled to carry a burden ranging from 
two hundred to two hundred and fifty pounds. When the rider was 
in the saddle, begirt with all his magazine, it was easy to imagine 
him protected from any ordinary assault. His properties rose be- 
fore and behind him like fortifications, and those strung over his 
shoulders covered well his flanks. To the uninitiated it was mystery 
how the rider got into the saddle ; how he could rise to a sufficient 
height and how then descend upon the seat was the problem. The 
irreverent infantry said it was done with the aid of a derrick, or 
by first climbing to the top of a high fence or the fork of a tree. 

It was perhaps due to the custom of carrying these complex in- 
cumbrances that the story became current among the rebels in the 
East, in the early part of the war, that the Yankee cavalrymen 
were strapped to their saddles to prevent their running away. 


Yet some of the men were not content with the regulation load. 
They added a set of plate-armor to it. Among the scores of arti- 
cles for various uses which were peddled in the camps within the 
first year of the war, was an ' ' armored vest. ' ' It was a vest of blue 
cloth, cut in military style, with two plates of steel, formed to fit 
the body and fastened between the cloth and the lining, so as to 
cover the front of the wearer from the neck to the waist. Samples 
of the plates were exhibited in the camps, with deep marks upon 
them where bullets had failed to penetrate, a spectacle which, with 
the glib tongues of the dealers, induced a few of the officers and 
men to buy ; and some of the horses, accordingly, had eight or ten 
pounds more to carry. 

Not for long, however, did any of the horses bear these dreadful 
loads. The evident bad effect upon the horses, the care of so many 
articles, the fact that some of them were not used often enough to 
justify the trouble of keeping them, and the invaluable lesson 
steadily taught by experience, that only a few things are really 
needed by a soldier, presented a succession of reasons for diminish- 
ing the inventory. The few "armored vests" disappeared on the 
first march. The lariat was of little use, it often entangled the feet 
of horses and burned them, and, with its big picket-pin, it was 
'4ost". The nose-bag was thrown away by many, and carried 
empty as much as possible by others. The rider's clothing was 
reduced to the least possible — a mere change of underclothing in 
addition to the garments worn. The hat was stripped of its trim- 
mings, or disappeared entirely in favor of the cap. The pair of 
blankets was reduced to a single one. Of the small articles for 
toilet and other uses, only those absolutely necessary were retained. 
One horseshoe and four nails only were carried, unless there was 
an express order to carry more. If a curry-comb or brush dis- 
appeared, no matter, — one man with a comb and another with a 
brush had enough for two. Even the supply remaining according 
to this description was further reduced by many of the men. It 
became a fine art how to lessen the burden of the horse; and the 
best soldiers were those whose horses were packed so lightly that 
the carbine was the biggest part of the load. If it is a wonder in 
the first campaign how a cavalryman could get on to or move his 
horse when equipped for the field, the wonder afterward came to 
be, how a man could live with so meagre an equip ment.^^^^ 

100 Scott's The Story of a Cavalry Eegiment, pp. 26-29. 



The State of Iowa furnished its full quota of men for the 
northern armies during the Civil War. If these men were 
at times not promptly and properly equipped, if they were 
forced to undergo unnecessary hardships and privations, it 
was not due to lack of interest and endeavor on the part of 
the State authorities to see that the troops received prop- 
er care. Nor was there any lack of patriotism, loyalty, 
and sacrifice on the part of the citizens of Iowa who re- 
mained at home. Money, supplies, and personal services 
were generously given in order that the soldiers might have 
every possible comfort. The untiring labors of Governor 
Kirkwood in outfitting and caring for the Iowa soldiers, the 
incessant toil of Adjutant General Nathaniel B. Baker in 
looking after the welfare of *'his boys'', and the patriotism 
and loyalty of the men and women of the State make bright 
the pages of this period of Iowa history. 

Cyril B. Upham 

The State Historical Society of Iowa 
Iowa City 


The ability of a Commonwealth to raise revenue depends 
upon certain well-known factors, the most important of 
which are: the character and number of the people; the 
purposes for which the money is to be expended and the 
attitude of the people toward those purposes ; the resources 
of the State and their stage of development; available 
transportation facilities; banking facilities; and adminis- 
trative organization, including the methods of collecting, ' 
accounting, and expending the funds raised. 


At the outbreak of the Civil War Iowa was one of the 
frontier States. With an area of some fifty-six thousand 
square miles the State had a population of about 675,000 
people, most of whom were farmers. The State was very 
thinly settled, but the population was increasing: from 
192,214 in 1850, it had grown to 674,913 in 1860. There were 
only six cities of five thousand or more inhabitants in the 
whole State throughout the period of the war ; and with the 
single exception of Iowa City these cities were all located 
on the Mississippi River.^ In 1865 there were still eight 
counties in the State each of which had less than one hun- 
dred inhabitants; eighteen counties had less than five 
hundred inhabitants each; and twenty-four or nearly one- 
fourth of the total number of counties had less than one 
thousand inhabitants each.^ 

1 1owa Historical and Comparative Census, 1836-1880, pp. 424-610. 
2 Iowa Historical and Comparative Census, 1836-1880, pp. 424-610. 



Iowa promised much, however, to the pioneer and immi- 
grant seeking a home. The climate of the State was health- 
ful, the lands were fertile, and many streams afforded 
natural highways to markets. Resources were here in 
abundance, but they were undeveloped. Settlers were com- 
ing every year in large numbers, but they had very little 
money. Land and coarse fare were plentiful, but capital 
and luxuries were scarce. 

Moreover, the three years preceding the outbreak of the 
war had been years of trial for the Iowa farmer. The finan- 
cial revulsion of 1857 reached its climax in Iowa in 1859. 
The crop of 1858 was very poor, due to the cold, wet season ; 
and during the two following years the crops were below 
normal. The secretary of the State Agricultural Society 
wrote that 'Hhe general scarcity of money, connected with 
the fact that there is no European demand for our surplus 
products, has told fearfully upon the prices obtained by the 
producer; but, still he has plenty, and should be thankful 
that it is no worse. In 1859 the secretary reported that 
the crushing weight of debt incurred during flush times had 
not been removed, but that it had become somewhat light- 
ened, ^^not so much from the amount of products of the 
earth brought to market, nor from the price obtained for 
them, as from the vastly improved habits of economy 
learned and practised at home."* 

Lack of transportation and communication facilities re- 
tarded the development of the State and strenuous efforts 
were made to secure railroads and telegraph lines. Agri- 
cultural produce brought low prices on account of the high 
charges for transportation to the distant markets. Wool- 
growing was encouraged, because wheat and corn would not 
bear the expense of taking to market. Capital was scarce, 

3 Jowa State Agricultural Society Annual Beport, 1857, p. 1. 
^ Iowa State Agricultural Society Annual Report, 1859, p. 5. 



and little real money was in the hands of the people. Their 
habits and general condition and their attitude toward 
public affairs did not in any way tend toward the complete 
and careful organization so essential to the successful con- 
duct of a war. 

The people of the State, it is true, were producing great 
quantities of food stuffs ; but the wagon roads were usually 
bad, railroads were just being constructed, and water trans- 
portation was slow. There was a total of only six hundred 
and thirty miles of railroad completed and in running order 
in the whole State of Iowa on March 1, 1862, and these 
roads extended westward from the Mississippi River towns 
only part way across the State. The people were begging 
for railroads and mortgaging their property in the effort to 
secure them. There was great rivalry to obtain the trans- 
portation facilities which were so vital to the interests of 
the various communities of the State ; and newspapers and 
public meetings devoted almost as much space and enthusi- 
asm to railroads as to the prospects of war. 

Moreover, when at the very beginning of the war, the out- 
let for agricultural produce down the Mississippi Eiver was 
cut off and the freight traffic of the river counties was di- 
rected over the railroads to Chicago and the East, both land 
and water communications were choked. Iowa farmers 
were practically without a market. Prices went down and 
freight rates went up; and the Iowa producers of food 
stuffs were at the mercy of the railroad lines which had had 
a monopoly thrust upon them.^ Corn was burned for fuel. 
In such a situation there was little money with which to pay 
ordinary taxes. To pay extraordinary war taxes seemed 
impossible. ^^Our business operations have been inter- 
rupted," said Governor Kirkwood in his message of Janu- 

s Fite's Social and Industrial Conditions in the North during the Civil War, 
pp. 42-77. 


ary 15, 1862, ^'our markets have been closed, the prices of 
the products of our industry have been lessened, we have 
been compelled to wholly forego or materially to curtail the 
use of some luxuries which, by use, had become to us com- 
forts of life, and these things must continue to be. They 
are the inevitable attendants of war, and must be borne as 
they have been borne, bravely, unflinchingly, and cheer- 
fully. ' ^ But, he added, * ^ there is not in the world a people 
of equal numbers, all of whom enjoy today so many of the 
necessaries and of the comforts of life as are enjoyed by our 
people. In our own State our cause of complaint is not that 
we have not enough of the necessaries of life, but that we 
can not get high enough prices for what we can spare of our 
superabundance; not, that we have not food, but that we 
cannot sell to advantage food we do not need!''^ 


The financial situation in the State was more dishearten- 
ing even than were general economic conditions. Taxes 
were burdensome and difficult to collect. The money situa- 
tion was unfavorable: the State Bank with its several 
branches had just been established and the depreciated 
paper of the unregulated banks of neighboring States was 
in circulation throughout Iowa. The exchange value of this 
paper fluctuated from day to day, but it was difficult to drive 
it out of circulation and there was not enough good money 
available to take its place. A general lack of confidence 
permeated the whole atmosphere and business was de- 

An examination of the financial provisions of the State 
Constitution is necessary to an understanding of the finan- 
cial situation in the State at the outbreak of the war. The 

« ShambaiJ^^h 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 306. 



present Constitution of Iowa was ratified in August, 1857 
— almost four years before the War of the Rebellion com- 
menced. The convention was held and the Constitution 
drafted during a serious financial crisis, which disturbed 
the commercial and financial interests of the whole country. 
The first Constitution of Iowa, adopted in 1846, had 
guarded against excessive State expenditures for internal 
improvements. It had, moreover, prohibited banks of issue 
in Iowa. Since the surrounding States were not so re- 
stricted Iowa became a dumping-ground for the worthless 
paper of the unstable banks of Wisconsin, Illinois, Missouri, 
and Nebraska. The prohibition of banks so seriously crip- 
pled the commercial interests of the State that the demand 
for adequate banking and taxing laws led to the drafting 
and adoption of the new Constitution. 

The financial provisions of the Constitution of 1857 fall 
into four categories — taxation, public debt, banking, and 
school funds. These provisions, with the exception of the 
one relating to school funds, were to have an important 
bearing on the problems of financing the war. 

From the Constitution of 1846 the provision that ^^all 
laws of a general nature shall have a uniform operation''^ 
was retained. It was further provided that *Hhe General 
Assembly shall not pass local or special laws . . . . 
for the assessment and collection of taxes for State, County, 
or road purposes'' ;^ and it was declared that ^^the property 
of all corporations for pecuniary profit, shall be subject to 
taxation, the same as that of individuals."^ Thus the Con- 
stitution provides that the rule of taxation shall be uniform, 
and that taxes shall be levied upon property in such manner 
as is prescribed by the legislature. 

7 Constitution of Iowa, 1846, Art. I, Sec. 6; Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. 
I, See. 6. 

8 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. Ill, Sec. 30. 

9 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. VIII, Sec. 2. 


The natural development of the State had rendered bank- 
ing facilities more and more a necessity. Consequently one 
of the most important questions before the constitutional 
convention of 1857 was that of banking. The need of a 
sound banking system was emphasized by the panic of 1857 
with its widespread financial and commercial depression. 
Most of the western banks suspended specie payment and 
thousands of Iowa citizens lost heavily. It was not sur- 
prising then that the Constitution authorized the General 
Assembly, with the subsequent approval of the people, to 
establish both a State Bank with branches, founded upon 
an actual specie basis and the branches mutually liable for 
each other's issues, and a general free banking system care- 
fully safeguarded.^^ At its session in 1858 the General As- 
sembly authorized the establishment of a State Bank with 
branches and provided for the inauguration of a general 
banking system ; and both laws were ratified by the people 
before the close of the same year.^^ Measures were soon 
taken to put the State Bank into operation. This institu- 
tion, with its several branches — fifteen in all — played an 
important part in aiding the State with its finances during 
the most discouraging period of the war. 

The Constitution of 1857 was very explicit in its provi- 
sions against: (1) the creation of a large or permanent 
State debt, (2) large indebtedness on the part of municipal 
corporations, and (3) the exploitation of the State or its 
treasury. It declares that *Hhe credit of the State shall 
not, in any manner, be given or loaned to, or in aid of, any 
individual, association, or corporation'' and that no money 
shall be paid out of the treasury except in pursuance of an 
appropriation made by law.^^ The power of a county or 

10 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. VIII, Sees. 4-12. 

"i-"^ Laws of Iowa, 1858, Chs. 87, 114; Shambaugh's Messages and Proclama- 
tions of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. II, p. 204. 

12 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. VII, Sec. 1, Art. Ill, Sec. 24. 



other political or municipal corporation to contract debts is 
limited to an amount in the aggregate not exceeding five 
per cent of the value of the taxable property within the 
county or municipal corporation.^^ This provision seemed 
to be necessary in 1857, owing to the fact that in their great 
anxiety to procure the construction of works of internal 
improvement many counties and cities of the State had 
adopted the policy of creating large municipal debts for the 
purpose of becoming stockholders in railroads and other 
private corporations.^^ In his message to the General As- 
sembly on December 2, 1856, Governor Grimes stated that 
the amount of such indebtedness voted by the different 
cities and counties at that time exceeded seven millions of 
dollars. On account of the liability of abuse, the Governor 
recommended that the power of cities and counties to incur 
indebtedness be limited.^^ 

The Constitution stipulates that the State may contract 
debts for the purpose of defraying extraordinary expense, 
but the aggregate amount of such debts shall never exceed 
two hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Debts to any 
amount may be contracted for the purpose of repelling in- 
vasion, suppressing insurrection, or defending the State in 
time of war; but the money borrowed for such purposes 
shall be applied exclusively for those purposes or for the 
repayment of the debts. With the above exception, the 

13 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. XI, Sec, 3. 

14 The Supreme Court of the State later decided that inasmuch as the credit 
of the State could not be loaned to private corporations the General Assembly 
had no power to authorize the cities and counties of the State to lend their 
credit and to become stockholders in private corporations. — See Stokes v. The 
County of Scott, 10 Iowa 166 ; and State of Iowa, ex rel. The Burlington and 
Missouri Eiver Eailroad Company v. The County of Wapello, 13 Iowa 388. 

13 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 37, 38. 

16 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. VII, Sec. 2. 

17 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. VII, Sec. 4. 


incurring of every debt must be authorized by law and the 
purpose of the debt must be distinctly specified in the law. 
Every law authorizing a debt must provide for the levying 
of an annual tax sufficient to pay the interest as it falls due, 
and to pay and discharge the principal within twenty years 
from the time the debt was contracted. The proceeds of 
such taxes must, moreover, be specifically applied to the 
payment of such debt and principal. Nor can the levy be 
repealed or the taxes be postponed until the principal and 
the interest have been paid in full. A law contracting a 
debt shall not take effect until it has been published and 
distributed, submitted to a vote of the people, and ratified 
by them.^^ 

These provisions are explicit and there is no doubt of 
their wisdom. It was, however, through misunderstanding 
or misinterpretation of these provisions that the State bond 
issue failed at the beginning of the Civil War in 1861. It 
was declared by certain factions, both within and without 
the State, that the law authorizing the sale of State bonds 
was clearly unconstitutional, first, because the State already 
had an indebtedness as great as the Constitution allowed; 
and second, because it was impossible to show that the State 
was in danger of invasion or insurrection. The opponents 
of the loan claimed that it was to enable the State to fulfill 
its constitutional obligations to the Federal government 
that the loan was needed. Outsiders gave the State credit a 
bad name by declaring that cities and counties all over the 
State had barefacedly repudiated their honest debts; and 
that the people, the legislature, and courts were all working 
together to avoid paying their honest obligations. 

In the matter of accounting and administration the Con- 
stitution specifies that an accurate statement of the receipts 
and expenditures of all public money shall be published 

Con.stitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. VIT, Sees. 5-7. 



with the laws at every regular session of the General As- 
sembly.i^ It also stipulates that no money shall be drawn 
from the treasury except in consequence of appropriations 
made by law.^^ 

With the outbreak of the war Iowa was called upon to 
furnish and equip troops for Federal service and also to 
defend the borders of the State. The situation demanded 
more revenue. Consequently loans had to be made and it 
was necessary to impose additional and heavier taxes. The 
finances of the State were not on a very firm basis, as has 
been seen, nor was the system of taxation especially well 
.adapted to the efficient handling of the situation. The gen- 
eral property tax was in use almost exclusively. The ad- 
ministrative system was decentralized and the law was 
laxly enforced. The State was every year sustaining a 
large loss on account of delinquent taxes, and it was with 
the greatest difficulty that returns could be secured from the 
different counties. It was estimated that there was a loss to 
the counties and to the State of from ten to fifty per cent on 
account of delinquent and unpaid taxes — the amount being 
measured by the large depreciation of county and State 
warrants.^^ The finances of the State were depressed as a 
result of the panic of 1857 and the subsequent poor crops, 
and the payment of the taxes necessary to the support of 
the government was felt as a burden by the people. Econ- 
omy and retrenchment were everywhere demanded.^^ 

In his first inaugural message, delivered to the General 
Assembly on January 11, 1860, Governor Kirkwood recom- 
mended a careful examination of the State revenue system 

19 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. Ill, Sec. 18. 

20 Constitution of Iowa, 1857, Art. Ill, Sec. 24. 

21 Brindley 's History of Taxation in Iowa, Vol. I, p. 52. 

22 SKambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 235. 


with a view to making it more dependable and efficient. He 
complained of a vagueness in the laws which tended to intro- 
duce among officials a laxity of morals highly dangerous to 
the public interest, and added that ^ ' any system of revenue 
which permits large amounts of taxes to become delinquent 
and to be ultimately lost to the State, must be defective, and 
must operate unjustly and unfairly upon our people. The 
deficiencies thus created in the revenue must be provided 
for by additional taxation upon those who have already dis- 
charged their duty as citizens, by paying the taxes assessed 
upon them, and they are thus compelled to bear more than 
their due proportion of the public burden. The laws should 
provide for the most rigid and exact accountability of all 
officers charged with the collection, control or disbursement 
of the public money. ''^^ 

As the law stood at the beginning of the war, the board of 
supervisors of each county of the State levied annually the 
following taxes upon the assessed value of the taxable prop- 
erty in the county : for State revenue one and one-half mills 
on the dollar when no rate was directed by the Census 
Board, but in no case in excess of two mills on the dollar; 
for ordinary county revenue, including the support of the 
poor, not more than four mills on the dollar, and a poll tax 
of fifty cents ; for the support of the schools, not less than 
one nor more than two mills on the dollar; for the bridge 
fund, not more than one mill on the dollar, whenever the 
board of supervisors thought such a levy necessary. Nor- 
mally the board of supervisors acted as a board of equaliza- 
tion for the county and the Census Board as a board of 
equalization for the State. Property was assessed by elec- 
tive township assessors and taxes were collected by the 
county treasurers, who forwarded the State's portion to the 

23 Shambau^rh '« Messages and Proelamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 234. 


State Treasurer. Heavy penalties were imposed for delin- 
quency in the payment of taxes. Property was freely sold 
to satisfy taxes and tax deeds were given to the pur- 
chasers.^^ Taxes were not paid promptly, however, and the 
State Auditor in his report for 1861 declared that ^^the ag- 
gregate amount of delinquent taxes is yearly increasing". 
He suggested that the penalty be increased and a uniform 
system of accounts be established.^^ Each county was held 
responsible to the State for the full amount of the tax levied 
for State purposes.^^ Auditor's warrants were receivable in 
payment of State taxes and county warrants were receiv- 
able in the proper county in payment of ordinary county 
taxes. Money only was receivable for school taxes. 

In addition to the fact that the tax system was decentral- 
ized, the accounting systems in the offices of the State Treas- 
urer and State Auditor were unscientific, to say the least. 
A commission composed of John A. Kasson, J. M. Grriffith, 
and Thomas Seely, appointed in 1858, to investigate the 
several State offices reported to the Governor in 1859 that 
the system of bookkeeping in the Treasurer's office was un- 
satisfactory. ^^The whole general revenue account is kept 
by a single book," it was said, ^^used for the first and only 
entries, showing in primary form, as on ordinary journal or 
blotter, the receipts and payments. There is no checking 
account whatever, no posting, no ledger. "^^ The Treas- 
urer's bank pass book showed an account between the bank- 
ers and the Treasurer in his private capacity only. There 

24 Bevision of 1860, Cli. 45. 

For a complete discussion of the State tax system at tlie beginning of the 
war see Brindley's History of Taxation in Iowa, Vol. I, pp. 45-70. 

25 Eeport of the State Auditor, 1861, p. 32. 

26 Revision of 1860, See. 793. ' 
Bevision of 1860, Sec. 754. 

28 Eeport of the Commissioners Appointed to Investigate the Several State 
Offices, p. 35, in the Iowa Legislative Documents, 1859-1860. 


were no separate accounts and it was found impossible to 
determine the amounts received from tlie various sources. 

In regard to the Auditor's office the commission reported 
that ''there has been no mode of transaction of the business 
of this office, that can be justly called a system^ since its 
establishment. There are in former years, debits without 
credits, and credits without debits, and accounts without 
balances, and books of memoranda, rather than books of 

The commissioners made definite recommendations rela- 
tive to the improvement of the accounting system used in 
these offices, but no action was taken by the General As- 
sembly; and no noticeable improvement is to be found in 
the reports of the officers until after the close of the Civil 
War. It has not been possible, for instance, to get from 
these reports a statement showing the amounts of State 
revenue derived from the various sources. The reports do 
not designate in detail or by class the various sources of 
revenue, but merely list receipts as received during the 
quarter for State revenue. The various sources are desig- 
nated for the first time in the reports for 1867. 

The people of the State were without a supply of ready 
money at the beginning of the war; and it was with much 
difficulty and great delay that the taxes were collected. In 
his message of January 11, 1860, Governor Kirkwood de- 
plored the fact that such a large amount of taxes was left 
unpaid. The Auditor also stated that the penalty for the 
non-payment of taxes was not sufficiently heavy and should 
be raised. Governor Kirkwood discussed the revenue situ- 
ation more fully in his first biennial message of January 15, 
1862. After referring to the economy practiced by the 
State during the first year of the war he spoke of the un- 

20 Report of the Commififiioncrs Appointed to Investigate the Several State 
Office}!, p. 81, in the Iowa Legislative Documents, 1859-1860. 


healthy condition of the finances dne largely to delinquent 
taxes. He pointed out the fact that the Auditor's reports 
showed that there were, on November 4, 1861, unpaid and 
delinquent State taxes to the amount of nearly $400,000 — 
an amount more than sufficient to cover the entire expenses 
of the State government for one year. Moreover, this large 
delinquency had accumulated within a very few years. The 
same Auditor's report shows that there were at the same 
date State warrants, unpaid for want of funds, amounting 
to $103,645, most of which were drawing interest at eight 
per cent.^^ 

Because of the above facts the Governor declared that the 
following conclusions were inevitable: (1) that during the 
previous four years there had been levied a State tax larger 
by about $300,000 than the necessities of the State required; 
(2) that this tax levy was rendered necessary by the fact 
that only a portion of the people paid the taxes due the 
State; (3) that the State had been compelled to pay an- 
nually large sums by way of interest on warrants, which 
need not have been paid had the taxes been collected 
promptly and the treasury kept supplied with funds to meet 
all demands upon it; (4) the State, being compelled to pur- 
chase its supplies with warrants, was obliged to pay higher 
prices than if it had the cash to pay; and (5) the taxpaying 
portion of the people had thus been compelled to pay not 
only their own proper share of the public burdens, but also 
the share of those who did not pay their taxes, increased by 
interest and high prices.^ ^ 

The entire section of the Governor's message relating to 
revenue and taxation constituted an able treatment of the 
subject. He stated that in his judgment the leading features 

soBeport of tJie State Auditor, 1861, p. 12; Shambaugli 's Messages and 
Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. II, p. 265. 

^1 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
11, pp. 265, 266. 

VOL. XVI — 5 


of a good revenue law were: (1) the imposition of penalties 
of such weight for the non-payment of taxes as to make it ^ 
without question the best interest of every taxpayer to pay 
promptly; and (2) the assurance to the purchaser of prop- 
erty sold for taxes of a valid title at the expiration of a def- 
inite period. Both of these suggestions aimed at greater 
effectiveness in the collection of taxes.^^ Furthermore, the 
Governor recommended, *4n order to make the revenue of 
the State more certain'', that the county treasurers be re- 
quired by law to pay the State Treasurer certain propor- 
tions of the amount of revenue due to the State at fixed 
times until the entire sum for each year was paid, whether 
the county treasurers had collected the entire amount of the 
State taxes or not. ^^At present the State is wholly help- 
less as to its revenue'', said the Governor. ^*It has to de- 
pend wholly upon the officers of Counties for its collection 
and transmission, and if the county officers are inefficient, 
the State is remedyless. Each county is now liable by law 
to the State for the amount of State tax assessed in it, but 
this liability, without any means of making it practically 
effective, is useless. If the Counties were required to pay 
the revenue due the State, whether collected or not, the 
County Supervisors would be stimulated to require of the 
Treasurer a strict performance of his duties ".^^ 

The fact that much depreciated paper money in the form 
of bank-notes was in circulation and that specie was very 
hard to obtain made the collection of taxes more difficult, 
since only specie or State warrants were receivable for 
State taxes, and only specie. State warrants, or proper 
county warrants were receivable for county taxes. And it 
is of interest to note that in spite of the fact that taxes were 

82 Shambaugh 'h Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 266. 

83 Shambaugh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 271. 


increased during the war, the reports show no appreciable 
increase in the amount of delinquent taxes. As a matter of 
fact, the proportion of delinquent taxes to the total amount 
of taxes collected was measurably decreased. [See Table 
I.] That many people could not pay their taxes is attested, 
however, by the long lists of real property advertised to be 
sold for delinquent taxes and published in the county pa- 
pers, with the names of the owners and an announcement of 
the date at which the sale was to be held.^^ These descrip- 
tions frequently filled whole pages of the county papers. 
In fact, it is said that newspapers were frequently estab- 
lished for the sole purpose of sharing in the lucrative offi- 
cial county printing. 

The following table shows the amount of State taxes re- 
ceived from the several counties, and the amount of delin- 
quent taxes due to the State from the several counties for 
the years including the war period.^ ^ 

34: Iowa City Eepuilican, November 11, 1863, and September 28, 1864. The 
Anamosa Eureka in its issue of September 6, 1861, contained the following 
editorial : ^ ' The Tax List. — This annual nuisance on which half the papers in 
the State rely to keep their heads above water, and which after the first week 
becomes as stale as a dead herring is published today ' 

The rates for the publication of the notices of delinquent taxes in news- 
papers were cut in half by Oh. 24 of the Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861. 

35 Table I is compiled from the State Auditors ' reports. 

The amount given under the heading ' ' State taxes received from the several 
counties ' ' in Table I includes besides the ordinary State revenue and the insane 
dues from counties and interest on delinquent taxes, small sums received from 
the sale of laws and from peddlers ' licenses prior to 1869. 

The amount of delinquent taxes is the sum of the delinquent taxes due the 
State at the date of the report and includes the unpaid taxes for all prior years 
which have not been struck off the books as unavailable. For example, the Ee- 
port of the State Auditor for 1861 shows that the delinquencies for the period 
ending on November 4, 1861, included the following unpaid and overdue taxes: 

Delinquent taxes of 1857 and previous years $ 31,311.39 

Delinquent tax of 1858 27,441.52 

Delinquent tax of 1859 30,524.56 

Delinquent tax of 1860 68,178.7-8 

Delinquent tax of 1861 134,892.96 

Total $392,349.21 



lArJljili L 

Amount of State 

Amount of State 

X x\ <\ rj o Xl-i-jv^llii \ 1^ LJ 

Taxes Due 

Period Ending 


from the 

Several Counties 

Several Counties 

Nov. 7, 1859 

$ 513,189.79 


Nov. 4, 1861 



Nov. 2, 1863 



Nov. 4, 1865 



Nov. 2, 1867 



Oct. 30, 1869 



Nov. 4, 1871 



The Auditor estimated in 1861 that about twenty per cent 
of the delinquent taxes would be unavailable. 

Notwithstanding the losses and delays due to delinquent 
taxes the finances of the State took on a healthier tone 
under the pressure of war. State and county officers per- 
formed their duties more effectively, the people paid their 
taxes more readily and could pay more easily on account of 
successive good crops and high prices for produce. That 
the curse of unpaid taxes bore heavily upon the State gov- 
ernment at the outbreak of the war, however, is shown in 
the following appeal addressed by the Governor to the peo- 
ple of the State on June 11, 1861 : 

I earnestly appeal to the property-holders of the State to aid in 
the prompt payment of delinquent taxes. We have Men, brave and 
true, in superabundance. There is Money due the State Treasury 
sufficient to meet the present legal demand upon the General Fund 

Not long after Governor Kirkwood had delivered his message in January, 
1862, calling upon the people of the State to pay their taxes promptly he re- 
ceived the following letter from the treasurer of Johnson County, dated Feb. 
12, 1862: "Permit me to say a word about your delinquent taxes in this county. 
Mr. Sperry sold a portion of it last fall for the Taxes, and now there are 
plenty of purchasers for the balance. They consider a good johe on you to 
urge in your inaugural the prompt payment of taxes, and at the same time 
leave your own unpaid. No doubt but in the vast amount of your duties you 
have forgotten it, or supposed they were paid." — Kirlcwood Correspondence, 
No. 459. 



for Civil and Military purposes, and pay off a large portion of the 
State indebtedness; but while a sum exceeding $400,000 of former 
levies js in arrears, the Executive Department of the State is ren- 
dered Comparatively powerless, and the military service subjected 
to extreme embarrassments. Will the patriotic masses of Iowa in 
their individual capacity see to it that this barrier to effective mili- 
tary service, shall be as speedily as possible removed 

In order to illustrate the status of county finances in 
Iowa during the war period the following data from a re- 
port of the county board of supervisors of one of the lead- 
ing counties of the State — Johnson County — is here 
presented.^"^ This data includes the amount of taxes levied 
in Johnson County for the years 1858, 1859, 1860, 1861, 
1862, with the amount collected in each year, and amount 
still delinquent on May 31, 1863 : 

State Tax 






$ 8,014.86 

$ 7,386.54 

$ 628.32 



















$ 4,957.57 

County Tax 


$ 33,952.50 

$ 31,977.97 

$ 1,974.53 




















36 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 473. 

37 Iowa City Bepudlican, June 17, 1863. 


School Tax 






$ 5,301.02 

$ 4,082.64 

$ 218.38 

















$23,442.08 $21,066.34 $ 2,375.74 

County Road Tax 

1858 $ 8,375.38 $ 7,106.20 

1859 7,572.14 6,229.16 

$ 1,269.18 



$ 4,612.16 


Road Tax 




$ 440.19 















$ 1,643.70 

Bridge Tax 




$ 438.85 

Township Tax 

1859-1860 $ 3,490.85 $ 3,456.21 $ 34.64 

1861 1,777.17 1,699.70 77.47 

1862 3,393.70 1,632.31 1,761.39 

$ 8,666.72 $ 6,788.22 $ 1,873.50 

Poor House Tax 
1861 $ 2,258.78 $ 1,917.77 $ 341.01 

Interest on Bond Tax 

1861 $ 2,259.97 $ 1,920.75 $ 339.22 

1862 1,582.17 1,206.48 375.69 

$ 3,842.14 $ 3,127.23 $ 714.91 


McKee Judgment Tax 
1861 $ 3,384.35 $ 2,883.43 $ 500.92 

War Fund 

1861 $ 3,384.36 $ 2,883.74 $ 500.62 

Lyons Iowa Central Rail Road Fund 

1860 $10,094.36 $ 7,978.87 $ 2,115.49 

Federal Tax 

1861 $ 9,024.70 $ 7,490.40 $ 1,534.30 

Relief Tax 

1862 $ 4,208.30 $ 3,203.16 $ 1,005.14 

Bounty Tax 
1862 $52,564.85 $40,097.71 $12,467.14 

Insane Hospital Tax 
1862 $ 1,047.63 $ 802.53 $ 245.10 

The exhibit shows a total levy for all purposes of $337,101.07 
A total collection of 292,011.32 

Total delinquent $ 45,089.75 

This statement indicates also some of the funds for which 
local taxes were being levied. It indicates, moreover, that 
in J ohnson County the proportion of delinquent taxes to the 
total levy was high — approximately fifteen per cent. For 
1862 alone the delinquent taxes amounted to approximately 
one-fourth of the total levy. 


It would be difficult to imagine a Commonwealth less pre- 
pared for war than was Iowa at the outbreak of the Civil 
War. The resources of the State were undeveloped. The 
State was thinly populated. Political feeling ran high and 
the sentiment of the people was divided: many people 
thought that a compromise could be effected ; and nearly all 
of them failed to realize the seriousness of the situation. 


Transportation and communication facilities were slow and 
entirely inadequate to meet the need for quick service. 
Economic conditions generally were unfavorable; prices 
were poor. The newly established State Bank, with its sev- 
eral branches, was improving the money and credit situa- 
tion, but it had not fully established itself in the confidence 
of the people. In fact, the transactions of some of the 
branches had been questionable. The taxing system of the 
State was not well adapted to cope with extraordinary de- 
mands ; payments were slow and there was a constant loss 
from delinquent and unpaid taxes. The financial adminis- 
tration was not well organized, while the accounting system 
was loose and inefficient. 

The militia of the State was unorganized and absolutely 
no preparation had been made for war. When the call for 
troops came there was not a single unit of the regular army 
within the borders of Iowa. There were neither forts nor 
garrisons — not a single military post was located within 
the State.^^ Neither were arms or equipment of any kind 
available and there were no funds in the treasury. More- 
over, in the actual preparation for war the lack of telegraph 
lines and railroads in the interior of the State caused much 
delay in the transmission of orders and the movement of 
troops. The fact that no railroad or telegraph line was 
built to the capital city of Des Moines until a year after the 
close of the war indicates something of the difficulties to be 
overcome in prosecuting a war under the conditions which 
then existed. 

Such was the situation in Iowa when on April 16, 1861, 
the Secretary of War called upon Governor Kirkwood to 
furnish troops for immediate service. Upon receipt of this 
call the Governor issued a proclamation to the people of the 

?'«Brijrgs'8 The Enlistment of Iowa Troops during the Civil War in The 
Iowa Journal of History and Politics, Vol. XV, pp. 324-330. 


State calling upon the militia to form volunteer companies 
in the different counties with a view of entering the active 
military service of the United States. He also wrote to the 
Secretary of War for information relative to the probable 
number of troops to be called from Iowa, and the terms 
upon which volunteers were to be mustered into the service 
of the United States. At the same time he assured the ad- 
ministration of the loyalty of lowa.^^ 

The Governor acted upon the assumption that the State 
would pay all the expenses connected with the raising of 
troops until they were mustered into the service of the 
United States and that the Federal government would arm 
and equip them.^^ Since the General Assembly met only 
once in two years and had adjourned early in 1860 there 
was no legislative authority authorizing the expenditure of 
funds. Nevertheless, the Governor postponed convening 
the General Assembly in extra session until there was some 
realization of the seriousness of the situation confronting 
the Federal government and the loyal States. He did not 
wish to incur the expense of an extra session unless it was 
absolutely necessary and it was made unnecessary for a 
time through the action of the branches of the State Bank 
in placing funds at his disposal.^^ 

Governor Kirkwood soon realized, however, that condi- 
tions would demand action requiring legislative sanction 
and on April 25th he issued a proclamation convening the 
General Assembly to meet in extra session on May 15, 
1861.^2 <^For the Union as our Fathers framed it, and for 
the Government they founded so wisely and so well," said 

39 Shambaugli 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 468; War of the BebelUon: Official Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 74. 

40 War of the Belellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 87. 

41 War of the Betellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 87. 

42 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 470. 


the Governor in his special session message, *Hhe people of 
Iowa are ready to pledge every fighting man in the State, 
and every dollar of her money and credit ; and I have called 
you together in Extraordinary Session for the purpose of 
enabling them to make that pledge formal and eff ective. ' ' 

In reverting to the action he had already taken, the Grov- 
ernor said that at the outset he had met two difficulties: 
first, there were no funds under his control to meet the nec- 
essary expenses ; and, second, there was no efficient military 
law under which to operate. The banks placed the neces- 
sary funds at his disposal and the patriotic response of the 
people removed or made less serious the second difficulty. 
In this way the requirements had so far been met. The 
Governor recommended that steps be taken to protect the 
State against invasion and that preparation be made to 
supply promptly any further aid needed by the Federal 
government. He specifically asked for the enactment of a 
military law authorizing, among other things, the formation 
of a military staff to aid him in raising, arming, equipping, 
and supporting the troops required to be raised by the 
State. Furthermore, he declared that it would be necessary 
to use the credit of the State to raise the funds with which 
to meet the extraordinary expense incurred and to be in- 
curred, and that the General Assembly had the power 

under that provision of the constitution which authorizes 
without a vote of the people the contracting of a debt *to 
repel invasion', ^or to defend the State in War.' " 

*'I feel assured'', continued the Governor, ^^the State can 
readily raise the means necessary to place her in a position 
consistent alike with her honor and her safety. Her terri- 
tory of great extent and unsurpassed fertility, inviting and 
constantly receiving a desirable emigration, her population 

-♦a Shambau^h 'h Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 253. 



of near three quarters of a million of intelligent, industri- 
ous, energetic and liberty-loving people, her rapid past and 
prospective growth, her present financial condition, having 
a debt of only about one quarter of a million of dollars 
unite to make her bonds among the most desirable invest- 
ments that our country affords. 

^ * The people of Iowa, your constituents and mine, remem- 
bering that money is the sinews of war, will consider alike 
criminal a mistaken parsimony which stops short of doing 
whatever is necessary for the honor and safety of the State, 
and a wild extravagance which would unnecessarily squan- 
der the public treasure.''^* 


The war demanded a more energetic and capable adminis- 
tration of State finances than had previously existed. At 
the same time it demanded a greater willingness to impose 
and pay taxes. The demand was met with serious deter- 
mination and with a ready response, and the financial ad- 
ministration was fairly efficient throughout the war period. 

The State had heretofore conducted its necessary busi- 
ness on a comparatively small amount of money. For the 
biennial fiscal period ending on November 7, 1859, the ordi- 
nary expenditures of the State government had amounted 
to only $366,198.57 ; and the extraordinary expenditures for 
the same period amounted to $212,157.45 — making an ag- 
gregate of only $578,356.02 expended by the State in the 
two years.^^ Money was scarce and a small amount to be 
paid in taxes was felt as a burden by the majority of the 
people of the State. 

44 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 256-259. 

45 Shambaugli 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 140. 


When the war became a reality the State accepted its 
share of the burden without question. The General Assem- 
bly wasted no time while convened in special session in the 
summer of 1861, but strove to provide ways and means 
whereby the State's part in the war could be economically 
and efficiently performed. Provision was made whereby 
the maximum tax levy for State purposes could be increased 
from two to two and one-half mills on a dollar. County 
treasurers were authorized to collect delinquent taxes by 
the sale of the property upon which the taxes were levied.^^ 
The Governor was empowered to purchase munitions of 
war and was provided with a contingent fund from which to 
defray extraordinary expenses.^^ A State war loan of 
$800,000 was authorized; and provision was made for the 
reorganization of the State militia.^^ 

A special fund was created — known as the *^War and 
Defense Fund'' — from which were to be paid all of the 
expenses incurred, by the State or its representatives, for 
the purpose of aiding the United States government in put- 
ting down the rebellion. Into this fund were to be placed 
the proceeds to be derived from the proposed sale of State 
bonds. This fund was kept separate and was not subject to 
the ordinary or general warrants of the State Auditor, but 
only to warrants issued for debts created for the purposes 

In order to further safeguard the State provision was 
made for a board of commissioners whose duty it was to 
audit all accounts and claims against the war and defense 
fund. No military claims of any character were to be paid 
unless they were submitted to this board and examined and 

40 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Ch. 24. 

Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Clis. 4, 20. 
48 7>aw.9 of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Chs. 16, 17, 18. 

Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Ch. 16, Sees. 3, 5. 


allowed by it. No accounts were to be allowed unless they 
were proved to be valid before the auditing commissioners 
in the same manner and form as the validity of accounts 
was established in the courts of the State and according to 
the same rules of evidence. 

The State derived practically all its revenue from the 
general property tax, the levy for State purposes being de- 
termined by the Census Board and added to the levies made 
by the several counties. The counties collected the State 
tax with their own, and the county treasurers then sent it to 
the State Treasurer. This dependence upon the efficiency 
of the county collections made the amount of State revenue 
uncertain and increased the difficulty of preventing loss 
through delinquencies. As a matter of fact, few changes 
were made in the taxing system during the war. A more 
insistent demand upon the counties did, however, result in 
better collections and, partly as war measures, the railroads 
of the State were taxed one per cent of their gross receipts, 
and the penalties on delinquent taxes were increased.^^ 

Reference has already been made to Governor Kirk- 
wood's able statement of the revenue situation and his rec- 
ommendations concerning the action which he thought 
should be taken in regard to it. In addition to his sugges- 
tions looking toward improvement in the collection of taxes 
— which were enacted into law — he presented a program 
of economies to be followed in the appropriations for State 
institutions. His program was accepted and the State 
thereby saved, for the time being, approximately $175,000 
during the first two years of the war.^^ 

Intimately connected with the subject of taxation and 

50 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Ch. 10. 

51 Laws of Iowa, 1862, Ch. 173, Sees. 16-20. 

52 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 270. 


revenue during the war period was the question of the kind 
of money to be received in payment for taxes. At the out- 
break of the war specie only was receivable. Shortly after 
the war began, however, the Federal government and the 
banks throughout the country were forced to suspend specie 
payments. Hence it became apparent that the State would 
be unable to collect its revenue in coin. As a result there 
was a demand that such changes be made in the law as 
would permit the payment of taxes in United States treas- 
ury notes and the notes of the State Bank of Iowa. The 
branches of the State Bank were required to redeem their 
circulation in coin at all times, and it was thought that to 
allow taxes to be paid in notes of the State Bank of Iowa 
would make payments more easy and more certain and at 
the same time aid to some extent in keeping up the circula- 
tion of the State Bank. The State Bank notes were de- 
clared to be honest representatives of specie. They should, 
therefore, be received in payment of taxes.^^ 

In compliance with what appeared to be a popular de- 
mand, the General Assembly, in 1862, authorized the re- 
ceipt of United States treasury notes and the notes issued 
by the several branches of the State Bank of Iowa in pay- 
ment of county and State taxes and other dues. Notes of 
the State Bank were not to be received, however, in case any 
one of the branches suspended specie payments. Moreover, 
these provisions were to remain in operation only until 
January 31, 1864.^^ Practically the same law was re- 

f>3 Shambaugh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 274. 

* ' It must be manifest to all, ' ' declared the Iowa State Register, * ' that if our 
taxes shall be promptly paid, some other currency than gold must be provided, 
and in authorizing its own bank issues to take the place, measurably, of specie, 
Iowa would only follow the example which the General Government has been 
comj)olled to inaugurate." — Iowa State Register (Des Moines), February 5, 

fi* Laws of Iowa, 1862, Ch, 17. 


enacted in 1864. National bank notes were made receivable 
for taxes ; and as in the former law connty treasurers were 
directed to pay the specie received by them into the State 
treasury and not attempt to dispose of it.^^ Provision was 
also made in 1862 whereby county treasurers were author- 
ized to receive State Auditor's warrants on the war and 
defense fund in payment of State and Federal taxes. A 
law was enacted in 1864 which prohibited the circulation of 
foreign bank notes in this State and an attempt was made 
in 1862 to enact a State income tax law, but such a measure 
failed to find favor in the legislature.^^ After the suspen- 
sion of specie payments became general the financial trans- 
actions of the State were made in United States notes and 
State Auditor's warrants drawn upon the general revenue 
fund or the war and defense fund of the State. 

In 1861 the Federal government enacted a law providing 
for a direct annual tax of twenty millions of dollars to be 
apportioned among the several States. Iowa's share of 
this tax was $452,088. Provision was made whereby the 
States could collect their portion of the tax themselves or 
they could leave it to the Federal government to collect. In 
case the States collected the tax a discount of fifteen per 
cent was allowed for collection if completed prior to a cer- 
tain date. It was provided, moreover, that the tax could be 
satisfied by the release of bona fide claims which the States 
held against the Federal government.^^ There was little 
newspaper comment regarding the Federal tax in Iowa 
newspapers ; and the first act passed by the Ninth General 
Assembly provided for the assumption and collection of this 

65 Laws of Iowa, 1864, Ch. 43. 

56 Laws of Iowa, 1862, Gh. 21. 

57 Laws of Iowa, 1864, Ch. 53. 

58 See House Journal and Senate Journal, 1862, House File No. 155. 
69 United States Statutes at Large, Vol. XII, Ch. 45, Sees. 8, 53, p. 292. 


direct tax.^^ A levy of two mills upon the dollar for the 
purpose of satisfying the tax was laid on the valuation of 
1861. County treasurers were directed to collect the tax 
with other taxes, but to keep a separate account stating the 
amounts collected. The Governor was authorized and di- 
rected to adjust with the Federal government the claims 
which this State had against it and apply the amount of the 
claims toward paying Iowa's quota of the Federal tax. The 
money derived from this tax was turned into the war and 
defense fund and used to pay the war and defense war- 
rants.^^ Congress repealed the law authorizing this tax in 
1864, after only one annual tax had been levied under its 


It has been shown that the finances of the State were not 
on as firm a basis as could have been desired when the war 
opened. The taxing system was decentralized, a large por- 
tion of the State's revenue was difficult to collect, the ad- 
ministration of the finances was inefficient, and good money 
was scarce. In addition to these conditions, crops had been 
poor and prices for farm produce were unremunerative. 
It appeared that the State could provide men for the armies 
more easily than it could provide the means to equip them 
for service. Under these circumstances the financial bur- 
den of the war threatened to bear heavily upon the people 
of the State. This burden did not, however, prove to be as 
onerous as the people feared. The drain of men from the 
farms, on the other hand, occasioned a very serious loss; 
between 1861 and 1865 Iowa sent more than 76,000 men into 
the Union armies.^^ This number comprised more than 

CO Laws of Iowa, 1862, Ch. 1. 

«i Laws of Iowa, 1862, Ch. 19; Laws of Iowa, 1862, Oh. 173, Sec. 1. 

fl2 United States Statutes at Large, Vol. XIII, Ch. 173, Sec. 173, p. 304. 

03 Report of the Adjutant General of Iowa, 1866, pp. 457, 469. 


one-tenth of the total population of the State and more than 
one-half of the total number of men of military age in the 

The actual amount of money expended by the State gov- 
ernment for war purposes during the several years of the 
war was comparatively small. As indicated by the amounts 
of warrants issued against the war and defense fund the 
expenditures were as follows 

From May, 1861, to November 4, 1861 $233,568.43 

From November 5, 1861, to November 2, 1863, inclusive 639,163.85 
From November 3, 1863, to November 4, 1865, inclusive 169,231.00 
From November 5, 1865, to November 2, 1867, inclusive 7,084.61 

Total $1,049,047.89 

Of this sum $277,320 was raised by means of loans which 
were still outstanding at the end of the war; $365,407.33 
constituted the receipts of the Federal direct tax; $100,000 
was received from the Federal government as a refund to 
the State for expenditures incurred in equipping troops for 
Federal service ; and the sum of $9058.24 was received from 
miscellaneous sources. The total amount of money paid 
into the war and defense fund thus amounted to only 
$751,775.57, which was less than the amount of the warrants 
issued against the fund by $297,272.32. An amount suffi- 
cient to cover this deficit was transferred from the general 
revenue fund, inasmuch as there was a large surplus of 
State revenue ; and by using this revenue, which was made 
possible by a law authorizing the transfer, the interest on 
the war and defense warrants was saved to the State.*^^ 

It has been noticed that the amount expended by the 

64 Census of Iowa, 1865, pp. 156, 157 ; Eighth Census of the United States, 
1860, Vol. I, p. xvii. 
«5 Report of the State Auditor, 1872, p. 61. 

66 Compiled from the State Auditors' reports, 1861-1S71; Laws of Iowa, 
1864, Ch. 61. 

VOL. XVI — 6 


State government for war purposes was small — only a 
little more than one dollar per capita. This was due to sev- 
eral causes. In the first place, the State was unable to bor- 
row money ; secondly, since money could not be obtained the 
expense of preparing the Iowa troops for the field was of 
necessity, to a large extent, borne by the Federal govern- 
ment ; and, thirdly, the State made no provision for the pay- 
ment of bounties or for the relief of soldiers and their fami- 
lies out of State funds, but authorized the counties and 
cities of the State to levy taxes for these purposes. 

When the General Assembly convened in extra session on 
May 15, 1861, as has been seen, Grovernor Kirkwood recom- 
mended among other things that provision be made to se- 
cure a State loan and for the State support of the dependent 
families of volunteers.^'^ After much wrangling over the 
question as to whether a State loan would be constitutional 
or not and many attempts to compromise on the size of the 
loan that should be authorized, an act was passed *^to pro- 
vide for the issue and sale of State Bonds to procure a loan 
of money for the State of Iowa, to enable it to repel inva- 
sion and defend itself in war''.^^ The law authorized the 
issue and sale of bonds in an amount not exceeding $800,000, 
payable in twenty years, with interest at the rate of seven 
per cent, payable semi-annually. 

The money arising from the sale of these bonds was to be 
paid into the war and defense fund and be used exclu- 
sively in paying expenses incurred in preparing Iowa troops 
for Federal service '^or such other purposes as are or may 
become necessary or incident to the repelling of an invasion 
or the defense of the State in war'\ The faith of the State 

«7 Shambaugh's Mcssageff and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
11, p. 2G1. 

Laws of lovja (Extra Session), 1861, Ch. 16; ILouse Journal and Senate 
Journal (Extra Session), 1861. 


was pledged to provide adequate means to pay the interest 
on the bonds and the principal when it should become due. 
The bonds and interest were exempted from State tax- 

The act named a board of commissioners whose duty it 
was to determine the amount of bonds, out of the total 
amount authorized, that should be sold. Furthermore, the 
State Treasurer and one agent named in the act were ap- 
pointed as agents to negotiate the loan. Sales were to be 
made for specie, payable upon the delivery of the bonds."^^ 
The law was carefully drawn and all the means necessary 
for the successful negotiation of the loan seemed to have 
been provided. Since the State's debt was small and its re- 
sources were great, and the interest on its bonds great- 
er than that on the bonds of many of the other northern 
States, it was thought that there would be no difficulty in 
finding purchasers for the bonds. 

The Board of Bond Commissioners met on June 13, 1861, 
and authorized the sale of State bonds to the amount of 
$400,000. The loan was advertised at home and abroad and 
all preparations were made to receive bids in New York 
City."^^ About two weeks before the Iowa bonds were to be 
placed on sale, however, the financial editor of the New 
Yorh Herald started a campaign to ruin the State's credit 
and to make the bond sale a failure. In successive articles 
the financial columns of the Herald attacked the Iowa war 

It was argued, first, that the law authorizing the loan 
was unconstitutional and that it was pure fiction on the 

69 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Ch. 16, Sees. 3, 4. 

to Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Cli. 16, Sees. 2, 5, 6, 8. 

71 Sliambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 474. 

72 See the New YorTc Daily Herald, June 24, 29, July 2, 9, 10, 11, August 3, 


part of the State to say the loan was made to enable the 
people of Iowa to repel invasion or defend themselves in 
war. In the second place, it was said that all the important 
towns and counties of the State, with one or two exceptions, 
had repudiated their honest debts, and that the people of 
the State had no conception of the meaning of honesty and 
integrity. These attacks continued up to the day when the 
bids for the Iowa war loan were to be opened. The result 
was that the bonds could not be sold except at ruinous fig- 
ures. Rather than submit to such loss the agents came 
back to Iowa without having sold the bonds. 

Governor Kirkwood at once issued a stirring appeal to 
the people of the State to buy State bonds, pointing out to 
them the desperate straits of the State."^^ The appeal was 
copied widely by the newspapers of the State and a regular 
campaign was carried on to sell the bonds at home. In 
spite of the appeals to the people, however, few of the bonds 
were sold. Some were exchanged for evidences of indebt- 
edness, but little real money was secured. The receipts 
from the sale of State bonds from the time they were offered 
for sale in July, 1861, until the close of the fiscal period on 
November 4, 1861, amounted to only $81,268, and war and 
defense warrants had been issued in the amount of $233,- 
568.43."^^ Efforts were made with some success to exchange 
State bonds for necessary equipment for the troops and 
money was derived from other sources. The Federal gov- 
ernment paid into the State treasury $100,000 in United 
States treasury notes as a refund, the Federal direct tax 
was being paid by the counties, and collections of general 
revenue were unusually good."^^ 

73 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 478-482. 

T^Ucport of the State Treasurer, 1861, p. 8; Ecport of the State Auditor, 
1861, pp. 14, 1.1. 

75 Kirkvjood Military Letter Boole, No. 1 ; Eeport of the State Auditor, 1861, 
pp. 5-8, 14; licport of the Stale Auditor, 1863, pp. 4-10, 15. 



Moreover, the Federal government decided to pay the 
State troops from the time when they were accepted by the 
Governor until the day when they were mustered into the 
service of the Federal government, as well as for the period 
of their actual service — a decision which decreased the de- 
mands upon the war and defense fundJ^ Nor did the State 
attempt to provide clothing and arms for any of the Iowa 
troops except the first three regiments. The State Treas- 
urer continued to exchange bonds for State warrants and 
for war and defense warrants and to sell bonds for cash 
when occasion offered, but no active campaign for the sale 
of bonds was carried on after the first year. Up until 
August 30, 1862, State bonds to the amount of $300,000 were 
disposed of, the receipts for which amounted to $277,320.'^'^ 
It appears that the bonds were then withdrawn from sale, 
for no further sales were made although many inquiries 
and offers were received by the State Treasurer in regard 
to them. The strain on the war and defense fund having 
been removed, conditions rapidly improved so that further 
sale of bonds became unnecessary. 

In the second place, after the first shock of the war, the 
Federal government succeeded in effecting an organization 
that could produce results in providing supplies of all kinds 
needed for the equipment of troops, and the individual 
States were relieved of this burden, largely because the 
Federal government could provide for the needs of the new 
soldiers more efficiently and economically. In Iowa, more- 
over, after the first three regiments were equipped, arms, 
clothing, and other necessities needed by the soldiers but 
not produced by the people of the State could not be ob- 
tained without money, and so could not be obtained at all. 

76 TJnited States Statutes at Large, Vol. XII, Ch. XVI, p. 274. 

77 :Report of the State Auditor, November 4, 1861, p. 14, November 2, 1863, 
pp. 6-10. 


Consequently the Federal government supplied the neces- 
sary equipment. Nor can it be said that the people of the 
State were opposed to having this work done by the Fed- 
eral government. Soon after Congress passed the law of 
1861 providing for the refund to the States of expenses in- 
curred by them in support of the Federal government, one 
of the leading newspapers of the State quoted the act and 
added : 

"We presume that in view of the foregoing Act of Congress it will 
not be necessary for the States in their individuality to incur any 
further expenses in raising and equipping volunteers, nor will it be 
necessary nor expedient to negotiate State bonds for war purposes, 
the Government taking upon itself the whole burden J ^ 

It has been noted that most of the war expenditures were 
incurred during the early part of the war, when the State 
was compelled, in order to facilitate the military operations 
of the Federal government, to defray a large portion of the 
expenses incurred in enlisting, transporting, subsisting, 
quartering, and paying the volunteer forces organized in 
the State. During the latter part of the war the cost to the 
State of organizing four regiments and one battalion of 
troops did not exceed one thousand dollars. This was 
largely due to the fact that Grovernor Stone refused to de- 
fray the expenses out of the State treasury and so they 
were paid by the disbursing officers of the general govern- 

In the third place, the State provided no bounty for en- 
listments and no relief for the dependent families of volun- 
teers. In his message to the General Assembly convened 
in special session in 1861, Governor Kirkwood spoke of the 
prompt action taken by county boards of supervisors and 

78 Dubuque Weeldy Herald, August 14, 1861. 

70 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
Ill, pp. 32, 33. 



public spirited citizens in raising means for the, support of 
dependent families of volunteers. He praised the work 
which had been done, but feared that it would be partial and 
unequal in its operation. **It is scarcely to be presumed", 
he said, ' ^ that companies will be received from all the coun- 
ties of the State, or equally from those counties from which 
they may be received, and it seems to me much more 
equitable and just that this expense be borne by the State, 
and the burden thus equally distributed among our peo- 
ple so rjy^Q General Assembly refused, however, to pro- 
vide State funds for either bounties or relief. On the other 
hand, county boards of supervisors were empowered to 
make appropriations for the support of the dependent fam- 
ilies of volunteers in 1861, but no further action was taken 
at that time.^^ 

Counties took it upon themselves to levy taxes for both 
bounties and relief. In 1862 the General Assembly legal- 
ized such action as had been taken by the counties without 
authority of law, and in addition authorized counties to 
make levies for these purposes. No limit was set to the 
amount which counties might levy, but it was specified that 
the levies so made should be kept apart as separate funds 
and be used only for the purposes for which the money was 
raised.^^ Again, in 1864, when it was evident that the de- 
pendents of the volunteers from some counties were well 
provided for, while those of other counties were suffering 
from want, the General Assembly directed by law that in 
the years 1864 and 1865 there should be levied in each 
county in the State not less than two mills on the dollar on 
all the taxable property in each county. The receipts from 

80 Shiambaugli 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 261. 

81 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Ch. 23. 

82 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1862, Ch. 30. 


this tax were to constitute a separate fund known as ^'The 
Relief Fund ' \ which was to be expended under the direction 
of the county boards of supervisors for the relief of the 
dependent families of soldiers and marines in the service 
of the United States.^^ 

The amounts levied by the several counties for bounties 
and for the relief of the dependent families of soldiers were 
as follows:^* 


For Bounties 

For Belief 


$ 3,384.36 


$ 273,046.40 














It will be noticed that these sums raised by the counties 
of the State for the payment of bounties and relief amount 
to more than twice the total amount raised by the State for 
its war and defense fund. According to the records of the 
War Department the total cost of bounties in Iowa during 
the war was $1,615,171.20. This sum included the amounts 
raised by counties, by cities, and by private contributions.^"^ 

83 Laws of Iowa, 1864, Ch. 89. 

Chapter 25 of the Laws of Iowa, 1866, authorized county boards of super- 
visors to transfer the relief fund, when not needed for the relief of the de- 
pendent families of soldiers, to any other fund. And, in counties where the 
relief fund was inadequate to meet the demands upon it, boards of supervisors 
were authorized to levy a tax of not more than one mill on the taxable property 
of the county for the years 1866 and 1867. 

84 Compiled from the reports of the several county clerks to the State Auditor 
in compliance with section 748 of the Eevision of 1860. 

85 In 1862 and 1863 the levy for relief was in some instances included in the 
report of bounties. 

«c JohnHon County was the only county to report a levy for soldiers' relief 
in 1861. 

«7 War of the lichellion: Official Bccords, Scr. Ill, Vol. V, pp. 748, 749. 



The sources from which the war and defense fund was 
derived have been indicated. The purposes for which it 
could be expended were specified in the act creating the 
fund: it was to be used for the purchase of arms and the 
munitions of war; for defraying the expenses incurred in 
calling out troops or organizing, uniforming, equipping, 
subsisting, and paying them, and for such other purposes 
as might become necessary or incident to repelling invasion 
or defending the State in war.^^ After the first three regi- 
ments had been fully equipped for service it became evident 
that the State could not secure clothing and arms for all the 
troops and so this equipment was left for the Federal gov- 
ernment to supply. The greater part of the expense in- 
curred by the State during the war seems to have been for 
the transportation and subsistence of the Iowa troops be- 
fore they were mustered into the service of the United 
States government. Nothing new or exceptional was done 
\ in the administration of the State's war expenses. The 
State did what was necessary and under the circumstances 
probably all that was possible. There were charges of 
extravagance and waste and charges of parsimony and 
picayunishness, but economy and honesty were apparently 
the guiding principles in the administration of the war and 
defense fund. 

The State legislature was very economical in its appro- 
priations during the war period and the State tax levy re- 
mained the same throughout the war as it had been in 1860 
— two mills on the dollar. The rate was raised to two and 
one-half mills in 1866 in order to provide funds with which 
to pay the debt contracted in 1858. But collections were 
better and funds for State purposes were plentiful after the 
first year of the war. For the eight fiscal years beginning 
on November 4, 1859, and ending on November 2, 1867, the 

88 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, Oh. 16, Sec. 3. 


total amount of receipts exceeded the total expenditures by 
a very comfortable margin and the State's finances were on 
a much better basis at the close of the war than they had 
been when it commenced. 

The following table shows the receipts and expenditures 
of the State for war and defense and general revenue pur- 
poses during the eight fiscal years commencing on Novem- 
ber 4, 1859, and ending on November 2, 1867.^^ 

Table II 

War and 

General Revenue Defense Fund 

For two fiscal years 

ending November 2, 1861, $ 578,759.91 $ 161,268.00 

November 2, 1863, 866,816.62 527,352.15 

November 4, 1865, 881,808.10 55,264.90 

November 2, 1867, 1,068,175.38 7,890.52 

Total, $3,395,560.01 $ 751,775.57 


For two fiscal years 

ending November 2, 1861, $ 599,825.19 $ 233,568.43 

November 2, 1863, 610,607.82 639,163.85 

November 4, 1865, 728,922.16 169,231.00 

November 2, 1867, 1,009,356.98 7,084.61 

Total, $2,948,712.15 $1,049,047.89 

The following table contains a combined statement of the 
war and defense and general revenue funds for the eight 
fiscal years commencing on November 4, 1859, and ending 
on November 2, 1867 : 

»9Eeport of the State Auditor, 1872, pp. 61, 62. 

P>y CJhapter 68 of tho Laws of Iowa, 1866, the war and defense fund was 
merged with the general revenue fund. 

Table III 

Biennial Fiscal 
Period Ending 





November 2, 1861 

$ 740,027.91 

$ 833,393.62 


November 2, 1863 




November 4, 1865 




November 2, 1867 









Total amount of Receipts over Expenditures, $149,575.54 

In regard to the sources from which the general revenue 
was derived during the war period little need be said. By 
far the greater part of the revenue was derived from the 
general property tax of two mills levied for State purposes, 
collected by the county treasurers, and returned to the 
State treasury. Little definite information can be pre- 
sented in regard to the revenue derived from other sources. 
The reports of the State Auditor and State Treasurer did 
not, at that time, designate in detail or by class the various 
sources of revenue received by them, but merely indicated 
the receipts as the amount received during the quarter for 
State revenue The different sources of State revenue 
were designated for the first time in the reports for 1867. 
Other revenue in the general fund came from the tax for the 
care of the insane collected by the counties, from peddlers' 
licenses, from the sale of laws, from the interest on delin- 
quent taxes, and from the fees paid to the Secretary of 
State, the Auditor of State, and the Agent of the State Land 
Office. After the war and defense fund was merged into the 
general revenue fund in 1866, the sums of money which were 
refunded to the State by the Federal government on ac- 
count of war claims were paid into the general fund. 

Table IV has been prepared in order to show as accu- 
rately as possible the purposes for which the State revenue 
was expended during the war period, as well as to show the 


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comparative amounts expended for the different purposes. 
It is interesting to note that the expenditures for the admin- 
istrative, legislative, and judicial departments of the State 
government actually decreased during the war only to in- 
crease rapidly at its close. The expenditure for the support 
and maintenance of the State educational and eleemosynary 
institutions was maintained, but the building program was 
suspended. The outlay for public improvements of all 
kinds was curtailed as a matter of economy. But as soon as 
the war closed expenditure for buildings and improvements 
increased very rapidly. The amount expended by the State 
for the general purposes indicated reached a sum for the 
fiscal period ending November 1, 1869, greater by three 
hundred thousand dollars than the largest amount spent in 
any fiscal period during the war. 


There is usually a tendency, if taxes are high, for the 
people to blame the State government, whereas excessive 
taxation is more frequently due to tax levies by counties 
and municipalities than to levies made by the State. Lo- 
cal extravagance was widely prevalent in Iowa during 
the early years of its history. And during the years 
just preceding the Civil War constant complaints were 
made against excessive taxation. Extravagant expend- 
itures were made and burdensome debts were contracted by 
the cities and counties of the State for the purpose of aiding 
railroads. The need for transportation facilities was great. 
Railroad companies gladly exchanged their stocks for 
county or city bonds or secured a grant of aid as a free gift. 
Excessive taxes were thus levied to pay these bonds, and it 
was natural that complaints of exorbitant taxation should 
be heard. In 1856 Governor Grimes recommended that a 
limit be placed upon the amount of debt that could be con- 


tracted by a municipality. His reason for making this sug- 
gestion was that many of the counties and cities of the State 
had adopted the very doubtful policy of creating municipal 
debts for the purpose of becoming stockholders in railroads 
and other private corporations. In fact, the municipal in- 
debtedness already voted by the different cities and coun- 
ties was in excess of seven millions of dollars.^* 

In 1861 the maximum levies that could be made upon the 
taxable property in the State were : for State purposes two 
and one-half mills on the dollar; for general county pur- 
poses, four mills and a poll tax of fifty cents; for school 
purposes, two mills; for the bridge fund, one mill; and for 
township road purposes, three mills.^^ 

Counties and cities were expressly prohibited by law from 
levying taxes to aid in the construction of privately con- 
trolled works of internal improvements, and their previous 
levies and loans for the benefit of railroad companies were 
held by the courts to be unconstitutional.^^ Counties and 
cities were at a later date permitted to vote aid to railroad 
companies, but were not allowed to become stockholders in 
such companies. In 1861, according to the newspapers of 
that day, Davenport had a municipal debt of $386,961, which 
the Davenport Gazette claimed was not one-third the debt 
of Dubuque or Keokuk. The indebtedness of Muscatine 
was said to be $85.63 greater than the city's total assets. 
Davenport claimed, however, that it always paid the inter- 
est on its debt promptly.^"^ All the indications are that the 

94 Shambaugli 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 37, 38. 

^5Eevision of 1860, Sees. 710, 743, 891; Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, 
Ch. 24. 

Revision of 1860, Sees. 1345, 1346; Stokes v. The County of Scott, 10 
Iowa 166; State of Iowa, ex rel. The Burlington and Missouri River Railroad 
Company, v. The County of Wapello, 13 Iowa 388. 

Iowa State Register (Des Moines), April 3, 1861. 


local units of the State were inclined to be extravagant in 
their local tax levies at the time when the war broke out. 

Table Y^s 

Year 11 

Number of 




State Tax 

County and 
Township Tax 

Total Taxes 

Ratio of 
Tax to 
Local Tax 







1 to 4.50 







1 to 5.65 







1 to 6.60 







1 to 9.00 







1 to 9.00 







1 to 7.00 

Governor Kirkwood referred to the relation between 
local and State taxation in his message of January 15, 1862, 
and presented a table showing the whole amount of taxes 
collected for all purposes in 1861. The table showed that 
out of every $5.66 paid by the people of the State as taxes 
only one dollar was paid for State purposes ; while the re- 
maining $4.66 was retained in the counties and used for 
county and other purposes. The Governor regarded this 
table to be significant, because the people believed that the 
great bulk of the tax burden was caused by expenditures of 
the State government under appropriations made by the 
General Assembly. Thus they had been taught to look to a 
reduction of State expenses as a means of relief from taxa- 
tion. ^^I would not'', said Governor Kirkwood, desire our 
people to relax their vigilant supervision of State expenses, 
but I am of opinion this information may lead them to give 

08 Table V was compiled from the reports of the county clerks to the State 
Auditor in compliance with section 748 of the Revision of 1860. The amounts 
given in this table do not in all cases agree with the amounts given in other 
tables for the same items. This discrepancy can be accounted for in that the 
valuations given here are those returned before the Census Board had made the 
equalization among the several counties. Moreover, the reports of a few of the 
countifjs were missing. 


as vigilant supervision to the expenditures of their respec- 
tive Counties, where vigilance is, in my judgment, equally 
needed. ''^^ A select committee was appointed in the House 
of Representatives in 1862 to investigate the assertions 
made both within and without the State that exorbitant tax- 
ation existed in some of the counties. This committee was 
not given power to secure information, however, and ap- 
pears never to have reported back to the House.^^^ 

Table VIioi 

1863 1 1865 1 1915 


756,209 1 2,358,066 

Acres of land assessed 


28,041,051 1 34,507,866 

Assessed actual value of land|$lll,653, 109.00 


Assessed actual value per 




Total valuation of all 







Total ordinary State receipts 
from taxes 




Total taxes — State, county, 
and local 




Tax per capita 




Per cent of total value paid 
in taxes 


.01373 1 .01966 


*From taxes, $2,728,631.66; from other sources, $3,977,852.77 

In order to present a comparison of the taxes levied for 
State and local purposes a table [Table Y] has been pre- 
pared. It presents as complete a statement as possible of 
the amounts raised by taxation for all purposes in the State 
during the several years of the war. The table is not com- 
plete, since some of the counties failed to make reports. 

99 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 269. 

^00 House Journal, 1862, pp. 266, 297. 

101 Table VI is inserted to present a basis for comparison between the taxing 
situation at the time of the Civil War and the present. The arbitrariness in 
valuation makes it unreliable, however, as an exact indication of real conditions. 
The data was compiled from reports of the State Auditor. 

VOL. XVI — 7 


Furthermore, the road taxes collected in the townships, to- 
gether with the taxes collected in some cities and towns were 
not, in all cases, reported to the county treasurers, but the 
table may be taken as approximately correct. Before 1860 
the counties were not required to report the amounts of 
their local tax levies to the State Auditor, but section 648 of 
the Revision of 1860 required such a report to be made. 
The table shows the total valuation of all property; the 
amount of the State tax; the amount of county and town- 
ship taxes ; and the total amount of taxes levied. The pro- 
portion of the State tax varies from almost twenty per cent 
of the total tax levied in 1861 to approximately ten per cent 
in 1864 and 1865. 

The following excerpt from the report of the finance com- 
mittee of the Johnson County Board of Supervisors at its 
September session, 1864, is illuminating in comparing State 
and local tax levies during the war. The committee on 
finance recommended the following levy for 1864 1^^^ 

For county purposes, four mills on the dollar ; for State purposes, 
two mills; for schools, one mill; for relief, five mills; for bridges, 
one and three-fourths mills. Bounty for the respective townships 
as follows: 

Iowa City 

6 mills 

Big Grove 

6 mills 













Pleasant Valley 





41/2 " 



Clear Creek 



4 " 




31/2 " 


7 " 


31/4 " 



And for school purposes the committee recommended that the 
amounts voted by the respective townships be levied. A poll tax of 
fifty cents was also recommended. 

102 Jowa City Eepuhlican, September 14, 1864. 



In summary it may be said that the financial administra- 
tion of the State during the period of the Civil War was 
fairly efficient. Strict economy was practised and the 
amounts of money received and expended by the State were 
comparatively small. The failure of the bond issue embar- 
rassed the administration and for a short time retarded the 
State in preparing troops for Federal service. The Fed- 
eral government, however, assumed the expense of paying, 
clothing, arming, and equipping the troops, and the relief 
thus afforded, in addition to the surplus from the general 
revenue enabled the State to meet all the legitimate de- 
mands made upon it for money. Nothing new in the way of 
methods was developed. Under the pressure of the times 
more efficient service was rendered by State and county 
officers, and the tax collections were much better than dur- 
ing the period immediately jDreceding the war. The local 
units of government continued to raise and expend in the 
aggregate, on their own account, a much larger amount of 
money than was raised and expended by the State. 


Some mention should be made in this connection of the 
part played by the banks and individuals in aiding the 
State to meet its financial problems. When the call came 
to furnish troops for the service of the Federal government 
there was no money available to provide for the extraordi- 
nary expense that must be incurred. The General Assem- 
bly was not in session and the Governor had no power to 
raise or spend money. In this crisis the branches of the 
State Bank of Iowa and patriotic individuals were quick to 
offer financial aid to the Governor. The directors of sev- 
eral of the branches of the State Bank passed resolutions 
directing their cashiers either to advance money to the Gov- 
ernor or to honor drafts drawn upon them for State ex- 


pense.^*^^ These proffers of assistance were appreciated 
and made use of. The banks were drawn npon for funds 
with which to equip and subsist the first regiments raised 
by the State. When the banks were hard pressed for money 
because of these loans the State could not always make pay- 
ments in specie, and State bonds and State warrants were 
often issued in payment, to the disadvantage of the banks.^^^ 

It would not be desirable in this connection to follow out 
in detail the various services which the branch banks ren- 
dered to the State. Their great service of course consisted 
in the providing of funds during the early months of the 
war when money had to be secured and the State was having 
great difficulty in getting it. 

Individuals rendered service of equal value. Hiram 
Price of Davenport, Ezekiel Clark of Iowa City, Samuel F. 
Miller of Keokuk, Samuel Merrill, G^overnor Kirkwood, and 
others advanced cash to the State for military purposes and 
were forced to take depreciated State warrants in repay- 
ment, with consequent loss to themselves. Some of these 
men became personally responsible for more than their 
properties were worth and were frequently threatened with 
ruin.^^^ Sturges and Jay, bankers of Chicago, tendered 
Governor Kirkwood the offer of a loan of $100,000 to aid in 
preparing the troops of the State for service pending the 
sale of State bonds, but for various reasons the Governor 
did not feel justified in accepting the offer.^^^ 

^03 Kirkwood Military Letter Boole, No. 1, pp. 2, 36; The Mt. Pleasant Home 
Journal, April 27, 1861; Dubuque Herald, April 19, 1861; Burlington Daily 
Hawlceye, April 18, 1861; State Press (Iowa City), April 24, 1861. 

■ioi KirJcwood Military Letter Boole, No, 1, pp. 60, 61, 197, 198, 205, 206, 242, 
259, 283; No. 2, p. 89. 

105 Kirkwood Military Letter Book, No. 1, pp. 271, 272, 341; No. 2, p. 87; 
Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. I, pp. 595, 596. 

100 Kirkwood Military Letter Book, No. 1, p. 264. 



The following act of Congress was approved on July 27, 

Be it enacted .... that the Secretary of the Treasury be, 
and he is hereby, directed, out of any money in the Treasury not 
otherwise appropriated, to pay to the Grovernor of any State, or to 
his duly authorized agents, the costs, charges, and expenses prop- 
erly incurred by such State for enrolling, subsisting, clothing, sup- 
plying, arming, equipping, paying, and transporting its troops 
employed in aiding to suppress the present insurrection against the 
United States, to be settled upon proper vouchers to be filed and 
passed upon by the proper accounting officers of the Treasury. i^''' 

Under this law the Governor was able to secure an ad- 
vance of $80,000 before any claims had been filed by the 
State, and an additional $20,000 was advanced early in 1862 
before any claims had been examined. These advances were 
made because of the great need on the part of the State.^^^ 
The Governor was at first authorized to settle the State 's 
claim against the Federal government; and claims to the 
amount of $647,563.78 were filed during the war.^^^ 1866 
an agent was appointed to prosecute the State's claims. 
The history of these claims is a long one and does not need 
to be related in this connection. Altogether the State filed 
claims amounting to about two million dollars and received 
! more than one and a half million dollars in settlement. The 
I last payment was received by the State Treasurer on July 
I 7, 1902.ii« 

107 Jjnited States Statutes at Large, Vol. XII, Ch. 21, p. 276. 

108 :Report of the State Treasurer, 1861, p. 8 ; :Revort of the State Auditor, 
' 1861, p. 14; Eeport of the State Auditor, 1863, p. 7. 

Laws of Iowa, 1864, Ch. 61; letter from the United States Treasury De- 
partment in the Governor's Documents, II, 655, War Claims, in the State Ar- 
chives, Des Moines. 

Laws of Iowa, 1866, Ch. 95; Beport of the State Treasurer, 1903, p. 133; 
letter from the United States Treasury Department in the Governor's Docu- 
ments, II, 655, War Claims, in the State Archives, Des Moines. 



At the beginning of the war the State had a debt of 
$322,295.75. Of this amount $200,000 had been borrowed in 
1858 on ten-year, eight per cent, State bonds; and $122,- 
295.75 had been borrowed from the permanent school 

The expense incurred by the State government on ac- 
count of the war amounted to $1,049,047.89. The total debt 
contracted by the State government on account of the war, 
on the other hand, was at its close represented by outstand- 
ing war bonds to the amount of $300,000, for which the 
State had received $277,320 — an average of a little more 
than ninety-two cents on the dollar.^^^ 

The difference between the amount of expense incurred 
and the amount of debt outstanding at the close of the war 
had been paid during the war from the following sources : 
in round numbers the Federal direct tax amounted to 
$365,000; the Federal government forwarded $100,000 to 
the State in settlement of claims; and the sum of $300,000 
was transferred from the general revenue fund of the State 
to pay war expenses. This left the State with a war debt of 
only $300,000, the interest upon which, at seven per cent, 
amounted to $21,000 annually.^^^ 

The General Assembly made provision in 1866 for the 
redemption of the bonds issued in 1858 by authorizing the 
Census Board to sell the United States bonds in which a 
portion of the permanent school fund had been invested, 
and which were in the hands of the State Treasurer. The 
board was directed to issue to the permanent school fund a 
registered State bond bearing eight per cent interest in an 

Beport of the State Auditor, 1859, pp. 9, 10; Eeport of the State Auditor, 
1914, p. 388. 

1J2 Beport of the State Auditor, 1865, pp. 5, 16. 

Beport of the State Auditor, 1865, p. 5; 1871, p. 7. 


amount equal to that received for the United States bonds 
sold. It was, moreover, authorized to increase the rate of 
the State tax within the limit already fixed by law. Bonds 
were sold and the State tax levy was increased from two to 
two and one-half mills. This provided adequate funds for 
the redemption of the $200,000 loan of 1858 due January 1, 
1868, and the bonds were redeemed as they were pre- 

The State's finances were in a healthy condition at the 
close of the war. In 1868 Governor Stone recommended 
that a portion, large enough to pay the war bonds of 1861, 
be appropriated from the proceeds derived from the State's 
claims against the general government and set aside at 
interest in order to save to the State the interest on the 
bonds and to provide a redemption fund from which the 
bonds could be paid when they fell due.^^^ Two years later 
Governor Merrill asked that the State Treasurer be author- 
ized to use the surplus funds in the State treasury for the 
purchase and retirement of the war bonds whenever they 
could be secured at par. The State Treasurer made a sim- 
ilar request and especially urged that provision be made to 
retire $25,000 of the bonds annually, which process would 
liquidate the whole debt at the time when the bonds were 
due.^^^ Governor Merrill later recommended that the rail- 
road taxes be utilized for the redemption of the State war 
bonds, but no legislative action resulted from any of these 
recommendations.^^'^ Provision was regularly made for the 

1^4: Laws of Iowa, 1866, Ch. 80; Beport of the State Treasurer, 1867, p. 7; 
Eeport of the State Treasurer, 1869, p. 8. 

115 Shiambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
Ill, p. 94. 

116 Shambaugh. 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
Ill, p. 264 ; Beport of the State Treasurer, 1869, p. 8. 

117 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
Ill, p. 336. 


payment of the interest and the bonds were allowed to 

In 1880 Governor Gear reminded the General Assembly 
that the war loan would mature in 1881 and the legislature 
authorized the Executive Council to levy a special war and 
defense bond tax in 1880. In case the proceeds from this 
tax were not sufficient, the remainder was to be made up 
from the general revenue. Moreover, in order to assure 
enough funds the Executive Council was authorized to ne- 
gotiate a loan on State warrants sufficient to meet the 
need.^^^ A tax of one-half mill was levied which provided, 
before July 1, 1881, the sum of $162,662.73, and the Execu- 
tive Council borrowed $125,000 on State warrants at four 
per cent. In addition to these sums, $9837.27 was trans- 
ferred from the general revenue — making a total of $297,- 
500, with which the war and defense bonds, with the 
exception of bonds amounting to $2500 which were not at 
once presented, were paid. Within a short time the $125,000 
in State warrants and the remaining bonds were paid, and 
in his report for 1883 the State Auditor congratulated the 
people of Iowa upon the fact that the war debt was paid. 
He declared that the State's finances were in a sound and 
prosperous condition and that the executive business of the 
State was wisely and economically administered.^^^ 

118 Shambaugh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
V, p. 26; Laws of Iowa, 1880, Ch. 199. 

i^i^ Beport of the State Auditor, 1881, pp. 3, 4; Eeport of the State Auditor, 
1883, p. 46. 

Iowa oame out of the war with a war debt of only $300,000 while several of 
the other States were heavily burdened. An Iowa newspaper in speaking of the 
debt gives Governor Kirkwood credit for having enforced an economical ad- 
ministration and compares Iowa's war debt with that of other States. ''Little 
New Hampshire, with not half our resources, has a loan of near $4,000,000 to 
carry. It will weigh like a mountain upon her, and that, with our freedom 
from debt, will be a powerful stimulus to send her young men to Iowa. So of 
nearly all of the eastern States. The future of Iowa is bright with promise." 
— Iowa City liepuhlican, Juno 28, 1865. 


Table VII 120 

Showing the Indebtedness op the State of Iowa on January 1st 
OF Each Year from 1860 to 1870 Inclusive and 
FROM 1880 TO 1883 Inclusive 







Total Debt 



Net Debt 






















































































































1 359,781.57 








1 450,041.98 



120 Eeport of the State Auditor, 1914, pp. 388, 389. 

In Table VII, the bonded debt includes in 1860 the sum of $122,295.75, 



When the war ended Iowa was richer, more prosperous 
and more powerful than when the war began. The popula- 
tion had increased slowly but steadily, crops had been good, 
and prices were high throughout the war period. Farms 
had been drained of men for the armies, but labor-saving 
machinery replaced them and production increased instead 
of diminishing. There was general prosperity in the State 
during the war and the foundations for many comfortable 
fortunes were laid. During the latter part of the war there 
was much extravagance and waste. Newspapers admon- 
ished the people to economize, and especially were those 
owing debts advised to pay them while money was cheap 
and plentiful. At the same time there was much saving and 
investment of a substantial character on the part of the 
people. After 1862 there were many calls for State bonds 
from the citizens of the State, but the receipts from ordi- 
nary revenue made the sale of more bonds unnecessary. 
United States bonds were bought instead. The First Na- 
tional Bank of Iowa City alone sold more than half a mil- 
lion dollars worth of United States seven-thirties during 
the first six months of 1865.^^^ The banks were prosperous 
and business in general was good.^^^ 

With the close of the war came a reaction, prices dropped 
suddenly, and business had to be carefully nursed back into 
a normal condition. 

which represents the amount the State had borrowed from its own permanent 
school fund. In 1868 this sum is increased to $234,498,01, at which amount it 
remains throughout the years for which the table gives the data. This was not 
a debt in reality except in the sense that the State had borrowed that amount 
from itself and was liable for the interest payments. The principal would, 
however, never have to be paid. The table also indicates that the floating in- 
d(;btedness during the war was comparatively small. 

121 Iowa City Bepublican, February 15, March 15, June 14, 1865. 

122 Iowa City Bepuhlican, November 23, 1864. The Iowa City Branch of the 
State Bank, on November 4th, declared a semi-annual dividend of ten per cent, 
free of tax, to its stockholders. 


From the financial standpoint, however, the State was in 
a very good condition at the close of the war. The storm of 
1861 had been weathered with difficulty, but during the re- 
maining years of the war there was practically no difficulty. 
The State tax levy remained the same throughout the pe- 
riod, but the valuation of property increased in spite of the 
war. Moreover, strict economies were practised by the 
State and the pressure of the war brought about a really 
efficient administration of the State's finances. At the close 
of the war the State found itself with unimpaired resources, 
an increasing population, and a war debt of only $300,000. 
Thus the State of Iowa did its part in supplying men and 
money for the prosecution of the war and at its close found 
itself in better condition than ever before. 

Ivan L. Pollock 

The State University op Iowa 
Iowa City 


[The f ollowing reports of topographical surveys of the Des Moines Eiver by 
Captain W. Bowling Guion and Lieutenant John C. Fremont in 1841, are re- 
printed from the Bouse Executive Documents, 3rd Session, 27th Congress, No. 
38, pp. 13-20. They were discovered by Mr. Jacob Van der Zee when pre- 
paring an article on The Opening of the Des Moines Valley to Settlement which 
appeared in The Iowa Journal of History and Politics for October, 1916. 
— Editor.] 


St. Louis, October 9, 1841. 

Sib: In obedience to your instructions of December 1, 
1840, directing me to make a survey of the Des Moines and 
Iowa rivers, for wMch purpose there was an appropriation 
of $1,000, after having completed the work upon which I was 
then engaged, and so soon as favorable weather in the 
spring and other contingent circumstances permitted, I pro- 
ceeded to perform the duty thus assigned to me. Upon the 
results of my examinations I have the honor to make the 
following report. 

The appropriation being too small to allow the execution 
of a minute and instrumental survey of any considerable 
portion of either of the two rivers, I determined to make 
such a general examination of them as would show their 
general character, the nature and extent of obstructions to 
the navigation of them, and as would enable me to make an 
approximate estimate of the cost of removing these ob- 

Accordingly, I advanced with a suitable party to the 
trading establishment of the American Fur Company, on 
the Des Moines river, 100 miles above its mouth, the highest 



point at which I could obtain a boat, and, having procured a 
very small and light draught keel boat, moved up that 
stream an estimated distance of 17 miles above the mouth 
of Eackoon Fork, one of its principal tributaries, or 137 
miles above the trading house. Here, so much of the funds 
in my hands, as, with a due regard to an examination of the 
other stream, I could expend, being exhausted, I turned 
about and descended the river to its junction with the Mis- 
sissippi, opposite the town of Warsaw, and 4 or 5 miles be- 
low the foot of the Des Moines rapids of the Mississippi. 

The chief characteristics of this river are, a great decli- 
nation in the plane of its bed, causing in time of flood a very 
swift current, unusual uniformity in the depth of water in 
its channel, great sinuosity of course, and a lesser amount 
of obstructions in the upper than in the lower parts. These 
obstructions consist of slight rapids, termed by the boatmen 

riffles,'' and a small number of snags and trees which have 
fallen from its banks. Besides these natural obstacles, 
there are two others, caused by the erection of mill dams 
across the stream — one at Keosauqua, about 60 miles 
above its mouth, and the other about 10 miles lower down. 
These effectually prevent the passage of loaded keel boats 
as well as steamboats; but as the proprietors of the mills 
are required by a law of the territory to construct locks in 
the dams, perhaps no importance should be attached to 
them. Of these riffles," counting those upon which the 
dams are built, there are 12, of which 10 are caused by 
masses of rock, chiefly loose, but some fixed, extending 
across the channel, and the other two by gravel bars. Six 
of these are found in the first hundred miles in ascending 
from the mouth of the river to the trading house ; namely, 
one in 40 miles, having a gravel bottom, and three in the 40 
miles above the mill dam at Keosauqua, caused by masses 
of rock protruding from the bottom. Between the trading 


house and Eackoon Fork (120 miles) five more occur; the 
first at the distance of five miles from the former point, and 
nearly opposite the village of the Indian chief Appanoose ; 
the second, 13 miles above the trading house; two others, 
severally at the mouth of Cedar, and one above the mouth of 
White Breast, two small tributary rivers; and the 5th, 5 
miles below the mouth of Rackoon Fork. Above the mouth 
of this stream, and at the distance of 12 miles, is the last 
one which I met with. At all of the six designated points, 
except the first and sixth, where it was hard gravel, the bot- 
tom of the river was rock. These rapids are all very short, 
varying from one to three hundred yards in length; but it 
would be impossible for me to state with accuracy the depth 
of water to be found upon them at any particular stage of 
the river; for, as I was met in my ascent by a considerable 
flood, the depth was constantly varying; yet, from sound- 
ings which were taken throughout, from observations upon 
the water line, made whenever the boat was not in motion, 
and from information received from others, I am induced to 
believe that at a medium stage there will be found, from the 
mouth of the river to the trading house, nowhere less than 
two feet of water, which is reduced at certain very dry sea- 
sons to ten inches. From the same sources of information, 
I entertained no doubt, that from the trading house to the 
point, where I terminated my observations, at the same 
stage of water, there will be found nowhere less than three 
feet, which is reduced in the dry season to one foot and a 
half. During the season of high water, which lasts ordi- 
narily three or four months, and sometimes six, there would 
always be from five to fifteen feet water in the channel. 

The removal of the projecting rocks from a space wide 
enough to admit the free passage of boats would render the 
channel singularly uniform in depth, and, with the destruc- 
tion of the snags, logs, and a few overhanging trees, would 


seem to be all that should be done ; for, in many of the inter- 
vals between the rapids, where the current is more gentle 
and the bottom fine sand, the depth of water is not greater 
than upon them. To deepen the channel in such places 
would be idle, for the same causes which produced would 
reproduce these obstructions. 

There are some other features in this river which would 
render its navigation difficult, though not impracticable, in 
any season. These are the extreme abruptness of a few of 
its many bends, which, by measurement, I found to be equal 
to and sometimes greater than a right angle, frequently 
bringing the lower part of its course parallel with the upper, 
around a point no more than 200 yards wide ; the other, the 
great swiftness of its current at those points, which, from 
observations made, I believe to be fully at the rate of five 
miles the hour. But the practicability of its navigation is 
placed beyond a doubt by the facts, that the American Fur 
Company have repeatedly transported their supplies to 
their principal depot in a steamboat of the size ordinarily 
used on the upper Mississippi in low water, and that a 
heavily laden keel boat has been taken up nearly to the 
mouth of Eackoon Fork. And the propriety of making the 
improvements which I have indicated, I do not hesitate to 
assert ; for the Des Moines is a beautiful river, 220 feet wide 
where I ceased operations, and increasing in width from 
440, below the mouth of Eackoon Fork, to 630, at the trading 
house, whilst its banks present one of the most fertile and 
lovely countries nature ever presented to the view of man, 
abounding in immense fields of bituminous coal from Eac- 
koon Fork nearly to its mouth. Iron, too, I found scattered 
along the banks of the river, but to what extent it exists I 
had neither time nor opportunity to determine. In fine, 
such are the temptations which this country offers, that the 
portion now in the possession of the Indians will no sooner 


pass into the hands of the United States than it will be 
crowded with whites, as that which lies below the Indian 
country is becoming already. 

In conclusion, I do not perceive a necessity for a more 
minute survey of this river ; for the obstructions are plainly 
perceptible at low water, and, if it should be attempted to 
remove them, will point themselves out. 

As I was confined to the house by sickness a great part of 
the summer, I directed my assistant, Mr. Burgess, under 
proper instructions, to make an examination of Iowa river ; 
and the result of his observations is embraced in the an- 
nexed report from him, which, it is believed, will convey all 
the desirable information in relation to that stream. In the 
subjoined estimates I have made no allowance for Iowa 
river higher than the raft below Poweshiak's village, in 
consequence of Mr. Burgess's report of the immense num- 
ber of snags and logs above. 

I am, sir, very respectfully, &c. 

W. Bowling Guion, 

Captain Top. Eng, 

Estimate of the expense of removing obstructions in the 
Des Moines river — i. e. opening a passage 100 feet wide 
through the shoals, and removing all projecting rocks, 
snags, and logs, from the channel. 

From the mouth to trading house of American Fur Com- 


10,000 cubic yards of rock, at $1 $10,000 

2,000 snags and logs 2,000 

From trading house to head of survey: 

9,000 cubic yards of rock, at $1 $ 9,000 

3,000 snags and logs 3,000 

Boats and machinery 5,000 





Washington, April 14, 1842. 
Sir : In pursuance of orders received at this city in June, 
1841, I left on the 27th of the same month the small settle- 
ment of Churchville, on the west bank of the Mississippi, a 
few hundred yards below the mouth of the Des Moines 
river. The road for about nine miles lay over a luxuriant 
prairie bottom, bordered by the timber of the Fox and Des 
Moines rivers, and covered with a profusion of flowers, 
among which the characteristic plant was psoralia onolay- 
chis. Ascending the bluffs, and passing about two miles 
through a wood, where the prevailing growth was quercus 
nigra, mixed with imbricaria, we emerged on a narrow level 
prairie, occupying the summit of the ridge between the Fox 
and Des Moines rivers. It is from one and a half miles to 
three miles in width, limited by the timber which generally 
commences with the descent of the river hills. Journeying 
along this, the remainder of the day and the next brought 
us at evening to a farm-house on the verge of the prairie, 
about two miles and half from Chinquest creek. The route 
next morning led among, or rather over the river hills, which 
were broken, wooded, and filled with the delicate fragrance 
of the clanothus, which grew here in great quantities. 
Crossing Chinquest about four miles from the mouth, we 
forded the Des Moines at the little town of Portland, about 
ten miles above the mouth of the creek. The road now led 
along the northern bank, which was fragrant and white with 
elder, and a ride of about twelve miles brought us to the 
little village of lowaville, lying on the line which separates 
the Indian lands from those to which their title has already 
been extinguished. After leaving this place, we began to 
fall in with parties of Indians on horseback, and here and 
there, scattered along the river bank, under tents of blan- 
kets stretched along the boughs, were Indian families; the 

VOL. XVI — 8 


men lying about smoking, and the women engaged in mak- 
ing baskets and cooking — apparently as much at home as 
if they had spent their lives on the spot. Late in the even- 
ing we arrived at the post of Mr. Phelps, one of the part- 
ners of the American Fur Company. Up to this point there 
are three plants which more especially characterize the 
prairies, and which were all in their places very abundant. 
The psoralia onolaychis, which prevailed in the bottom 
near the mouth of the Des Moines, gave place on the higher 
prairies to a species of causalia, which was followed, on its 
disappearance further up, by parthenium integrifolium. 
The prairie bottoms bordering the river were filled with 
lyatris pycnostachya ; and a few miles above Portland, on 
the north bank of the river, were quantities of lyatris res- 
inosa, mingled with Rudbackia digetata. 

On the bluffs here, the growth was principally quercus 
alba, interspersed with tuictoria and malrocarpa, and some- 
times carya alba. All these now and then appear in the 
bottoms, with carya oliveformis and tilia. tJlmes Ameri- 
cana and fulvia betula rubra, with osteya Virginica and 
gymnoeladus canadensis, are found on the bottom land of 
the creeks. Populus canadensis and salex form groves in 
the inundated river bottoms, and the celtis accidentalis is 
found every where. 

Having been furnished with a guide and other necessaries 
by the uniform kindness of the American Fur Company, we 
resumed our journey on the morning of the 1st of July, and 
late in the evening reached the house of Mr. Jameson — 
another of the company's posts, about twenty miles higher 
up. Making here the necessary preparations, I commenced 
on the morning of the 3d a survey of the river valley. 

A canoe, with instruments and provisions, and manned by 
five men, proceeded up the river, while, in conformity to 
instructions which directed my attention more particularly 


to the topography of the southem side, I forded the river 
and proceeded by land. The character of the river ren- 
dered the progress of the boat necessarily slow, and en- 
abled me generally to join them at night, after having made 
during the day a satisfactory examination of the neighbor- 
ing country. Proceeding in this way, we reached Rackoon 
Fork on the evening of the 9th of July. I had found the 
whole region densely and luxuriantly timbered. From 
Mule creek to the eastward, as far as Chinquest, the forests 
extend with only the interruption of a narrow prairie be- 
tween the latter and Soap creek. The most open country is 
on the uplands bordering Cedar river, which consist of a 
prairie with a rich soil, covered with the usual innumerable 
flowers and copses of hazel and wild plum. This prairie 
extends from the mouth of Cedar river to the top of the 
Missouri dividing ridge, which is here at its nearest ap- 
proach to the Des Moines river, the timber of the Chariton, 
|j or southern slope, being not more than twelve miles distant. 
I From this point to the Eackoon Fork, the country is covered 
with heavy and dense bodies of timber, with a luxuriant 
soil and almost impenetrable undergrowth. 
Acer saccharium of an extraordinary size, inglans cathar- 
I tica and nigra, with celtis crassifolia, were among the pre- 
: vailing growth, flourishing as well on the broken slopes of 

I the bluffs as on the uplands. With the occasional exception 
of a small prairie shut up in the forests, the only open land 
is between the main tributaries of the Des Moines, towards 
which narrow strips of prairie run down from the main 
ridge. The heaviest bodies lie on the Three Rivers, where 
I it extends out to the top of the main ridge, about thirty 
I miles. On the northern side of the Des Moines, the ridge 
appeared to be continuously wooded, but with a breadth of 
only three to five miles, as the streams on that side are all 
short creeks. A very correct idea of the relative quality 


and disposition of forest land and prairie will be conveyed 
by the rough sketch annexed. 

Having determined the position of the Eackoon Fork, 
which was one of the principal objects of my visit to this 
country, I proceeded to make a survey of the Des Moines 
river thence to the mouth. In the course of the survey, 
which occupied me until the 22d of July, I was enabled to 
fix four additional astronomical positions, which I should 
have preferred, had time permitted, to place at the mouth 
of the principal tributaries. 

From the Eackoon Fork to its mouth, the Des Moines 
winds a circuitous length of two hundred and three miles 
through the level and rich alluvium of a valley one hundred 
and forty miles long, and varying in breadth from one to 
three, and sometimes four miles. 

Along its whole course are strips of dense wood, alternate 
with rich prairies, entirely beyond the reach of the highest 
waters, which seldom rise more than eight feet above the 
low stage. Acer eridcarfurm, which is found only on the 
banks of such rivers as have a gravelly bed, is seen almost 
constantly along the shore, next to the salex and populus 
canadensis, which border the water's edge. 

The bed of the river is sand and gravel, and sometimes 
rock, of which the rapids generally consist. All of these 
which presented themselves, deserving the name, will be 
found noted on the accompanying map, and two of the more 
important are represented on a large scale. After these, 
the most considerable rapid above the Great Bend is at the 
head of the island above Keokuk's village. The bend in the 
river here is very sharp, the water swift, with a fall of 
about one foot, and a bottom of loose rocks, with a depth of 
two feet at the lowest stage. At the mouth of Tohlman's 
creek is only a rocky rapid, used as a ford, whose depth at 
low water is one foot. The rapid of the Great Bend, 4>4 


miles below CMnquest creek, has a fall of 12 inches, and, so 
far as I could ascertain, had formerly a depth of 18 inches 
at low water. A dam has been built at this place, and the 
river passes through an opening of about 40 feet. Another 
dam has been built at a rapid 12 miles lower down, where 
the river is 650 feet wide. The fall, which I had no means 
to ascertain correctly, was represented to me as slight, with 
a depth of 18 inches at lowest water. Four and a half miles 
lower down, at Farmington, another dam and mill are in 
course of construction, but the rapid here is inconsiderable, 
and the low water depth greater than at the other two. 

I regret that I had neither the time nor the instruments 
requisite to determine, accurately, the velocity and fall of 
the river, which I estimated at six inches per mile, making a 
total fall of about 100 feet from the Rackoon to the mouth. 
It is 350 feet wide between the perpendicular banks at the 
mouth of the Eackoon, from which it receives about one- 
third its supply of water, and which is 200 feet wide a little 
about the mouth. Its width increases very regularly to 
over 600 feet, at Mr. Phelps's post, between which and 700 
feet it varies until it enters the Mississippi bottom, near 
Francisville, where it becomes somewhat narrower and 
deeper. At the time of my visit, the water was at one of its 
lowest stages; and at the shallowest place above Cedar 
river, known as such to the fur company boatmen, I found 
a depth of 12 inches. The principal difficulties in the navi- 
gation, more especially above the Cedar, consist in the 
sand bars. These, which are very variable in position, 
sometimes extend entirely across the river, and often ter- 
minate abruptly, changing from a depth of a few inches to 
8 and 12 feet. From my own observations, joined to the 
information obtained from Mr. Phelps, who has resided 
about twenty years on this river, and who has kept boats 
upon it constantly during that period, I am enabled to pre- 


sent the following, relative to tlie navigation, as data that 
may be relied upon. 

Steamboats drawing four feet water may run to the 
mouth of Cedar river from the 1st of April to the middle of 
June; and keelboats drawing two feet, from the 20th of 
March to the 1st of July; and those drawing 20 inches, 
again, from the middle of October to the 20th of November. 
Mr. Phelps ran a Mississippi steamer to his post, a distance 
of 87 miles from the mouth, and a company are now en- 
gaged in building one to navigate the river. From these 
observations it will be seen that this river is highly sus- 
ceptible of improvement, presenting nowhere any obstacles 
that would not yield readily, and at slight expense. The re- 
moval of loose stone at some points, and the construction of 
artificial banks at some few others, to destroy the abrupt 
bends, would be all that is required. The variable nature of 
the bed and the velocity of the current would keep the chan- 
nel constantly clear. 

The botany and geology of the region visited occupied a 
considerable share of my attention. Should it be required 
by the bureau, these may form the subject of a separate re- 
port. In this I have notice the prevailing growth and char- 
acteristic plants, and those places at which coal beds pre- 
sented themselves will be found noted on the map. 
Very respectfully, sir, your obedient servant. 

Colonel J. J. Abekt, 

Chief Topographical Engineers, 

J. C. Fkemont, 
3d Lieut. Top. Engs. 

Table of Distances 



From Eackoon Fork to upper Three Rivers. . .13% 
From upper Three Rivers to middle Three 
Rivers 9 



Miles Miles 

From middle Three Rivers to lowest Three 

'Rivers 5% 28 

From lowest Three Rivers to Red Rock rapids 163^4 443^ 

From Red Rock rapids to White Breast river 914 54 

From White Breast river to Eagle Nest rapids 814 62% 

From Eagle Nest rapids to English river. .... 3% 66 

From English River to Cedar river 11 77 

From Cedar River to Vessor's trading house, 

A. F. C 17 94 

From Vessor's trading house, A. F. C, to 

Phelps's trading house, A. F. C 22 116 

From Phelps's trading house, A. F. C, to Soap 

Creek 123/4 1283^ 

From Soap creek to Shoal creek 153^4 144% 

From Shoal creek to dam at rapid of the Great 

Bend 8 1521/2 

From dam at rapid of the Great Bend to sec- 
ond dam 12 164% 

From second dam to Indian creek 6 170% 

From Indian creek to Sweet Home 7l^ 177% 

From Sweet Home to Francisville landing. . . 9% 187i^ 
From Francisville landing to Sugar, on Half- 
breed Creek 7% 194% 

From Half-breed creek to the mouth 9 203% 

Washington City, December 10, 1842. 
SiK : It will be a reply to a greater part of the questions 
contained in your favor of the 7th, to say that the survey 
which I made of the Des Moines in July, 1841, was simply 
geographical, and principally to determine some astronom- 
ical positions, particularly at the mouth of the Rackoon 
Fork. Any examination, therefore, of the rapids, or other 
obstructions to the navigation, would be merely incidental ; 
and to those within the territorial line, more especially the 


rapids of the Great Bend, which had been made the subject 
of a particular survey, I gave very little attention. There 
are some 10 or 12 rapids in the space between the Rackoon 
Fork and the Great Bend, a distance of 145 miles. Of the 
two largest, the Eagle Nest and Red Rock rapids, you will 
find drawings on an enlarged scale on the map which ac- 
companies my report; the former is 108 and the latter 90 
miles above the rapids of the Great Bend. At this last 
place, I estimated the perpendicular fall to be 12 inches; 
and it is very probable not less than two feet in 80 or 100 
yards. The rapid at Lexington is two miles and 1,000 yards 
south of that at the Great Bend, and by the river 11% 
miles below. Heavy and continuous rains had occasioned a 
rise of some feet when I made the survey of the lower part 
of the river, and the rapid at Farmington, which is 15% 
miles below that at the Great Bend, and 5% miles south of 
it, was then scarcely a ripple, and below this point I re- 
marked no rapids worthy the name. 

In the course of surveys on the western tributaries of 
the upper Mississippi, I found, among their numerous 
shoals, and in the lower part of their course, one to which 
was usually given the name of falls or rapids, by way of 
distinction. The ^^St. Peter's rapids,'' which form a seri- 
ous obstruction to the navigation of that river, occur about 
60 miles from the mouth. Those of the Embarrus river, of 
which there are two, about one mile apart, with a perpen- 
dicular fall of three feet each, are within the distance above 
mentioned from the mouth of the river. To this line of 
falls, extending across these rivers from north to south, and 
occasioned perhaps by a change in the formation, I sup- 
posed that the rapids at the Great Bend might belong. 
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

J. C. Fremont, 
Hon. J. C. Edwards. Lieut. Top, Engineers. 


The American Indians North of Mexico, By William Harvey 
Miner. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1917. Pp. x, 
169. Portrait, map. This little volume was written to supply the 
need for a brief, readable, and at the same time authentic, account 
of the American Indians. This purpose, it is believed, has been 
accomplished. The book is readable, it contains the facts which the 
average reader would most like to know, and it is of a length which 
makes its reading a matter of only a few hours at the most. 

There are six chapters in the book. The first chapter is intro- 
ductory in character and contains a brief description of the main 
physical features of the North American continent. Chapter two 
deals with general facts about the Indians, such as the theories con- 
cerning the origin of the race, and the various linguistic groups. 
Indian sociology is the subject discussed in chapter three, including 
the forms of social and political organization, the home life of the 
Indians, their habits and customs, religious ideas, the position of 
women, diseases, etc. lowans will find special interest and value in 
chapter four, which is devoted to the plains Indians. The Cheyenne, 
Iowa, and Pawnee Indians of the Algonquian group, and the Sioux 
Indians of the Siouan group, are the tribes selected for discussion 
to illustrate the characteristics of the plains Indians. Chapters five 
and six deal with the Indians of the Southwest and Indian myth- 
ology, respectively. Some notes and an index complete the volume. 

Barbed Wire and Other Poems. By Edwin Ford Piper. Iowa 
City : The Midland Press. 1917. Pp. 125. It is seldom that a book 
of poems demands more than incidental mention in a historical pub- 
lication. But aside from its distinct literary merit and the fact that 
its author is a western man, this volume deserves a place in the 
literature dealing with pioneer life in the prairie region typified by 
Nebraska and Iowa. The titles of some of the poems give an indi- 



cation of the character of the volume: ''The Movers'', ''The Last 
Antelope", "The Cowboy", "The Settler", "The Horse Thief", 
"Barbed Wire", "Breaking Sod", "The Sod House", "The 
Drought", "The Ford at the River", "The Prairie Fire", "The 
Boy on the Prairie", "The Grasshoppers", "The Schoolmistress", 
"Ten Cents a Bushel", "The Church", "The Ridge Farm", "The 
Neighborhood", "The Claim- Jumper", and "The Party". 

The poems are not mere fanciful eulogies, such as are so common 
among the so-called poetry dealing with the pioneers. Each poem 
contains a description or is centered about an incident having the 
appearance of being based on actual fact, while at the same time 
being typical of the experiences of the early settlers on these plains. 
They present to the reader, in a very agreeable manner, pictures of 
pioneer life which are both vivid and truthful. Furthermore, they 
illustrate the fact, so often overlooked, that in the history of the 
Mississippi Valley there is an abundance of material for the pen of 
the writer of real literature. 

The American Indian: An Introduction to the Anthropology of 
the New World. By Clark Wissleb. New York: Douglas C. 
McMurtrie. 1917. Pp. xiii, 435. Portraits, plates, maps. "This 
book ' says the author, ' ' is offered as a general summary of anthro- 
pological research in the New World. It is in the main a by-product 
of the author's activities as a museum curator in which capacity he 
has sought to objectify and systematize the essential facts relating 
to aboriginal America. ' ' The work is divided into twenty-one chap- 
ters dealing with the following subjects : the food areas of the New 
World, domestication of animals and methods of transportation, the 
textile arts, the ceramic arts, decorative designs, architecture, work 
in stone and metals, special inventions, the fine arts, social group- 
ing, social regulation, ritualistic observances, mythology, the classi- 
fication of social groups according to their cultures, archaeological 
classification, chronology of cultures, linguistic classification, corre- 
lation of classifications, theories of culture origins, and New World 
origins. In an appendix may be found useful linguistic tables and 
a bibliography. An index completes the volume. A large number 
of illustrations form an interesting feature of the work. 



Two articles which appear in The Quarterly Journal of Econom- 
ics for November are : The War Tax of 1917, by F, W. Taussig ; and 
The Adjustment of Labor Disputes in the United States during the 
War, by Louis B. Wehle. 

A List of Recent References on Railroads in War is among the 
contents of the September number of Special Libraries. 

Why We are at War, by Olin D. Wannamaker; The Contracting 
Field for Individualism, by Nathaniel R. Whitney; and Horace 
Greeley and the South, 1865-1872, by Earle D. Ross, are articles in 
the October number of The South Atlantic Quarterly. 

Two articles in the July-September number of The American In- 
dian Magazine are the following: McWhorter — Friend of the Ya- 
himas, by J. P. MacLean; and How Flint Arrow Heads were Made, 
by Arthur C. Parker. 

Among the articles in the December number of the Political Sci- 
ence Quarterly are the following: The National Government as a 
Holding Corporation: The Question of Subsidiary Budgets, by W. 
F. Willoughby; Social Welfare in Rate Making, by Raymond T. 
Bye; and The Workmen's Compensation Cases, by Thomas Reed 

In the Review of Labor Legislation of 1917 which appears in the 
September number of The American Labor Legislation Revieiv 
there may be found an excellent digest of the laws along this line 
enacted by the last General Assembly of Iowa. 

Students of the American Indians will find much of interest and 
value in a volume on Stone Ornaments Used by Indians in the 
United States and Canada, by "Warren K. Moorehead, which has 
been published by the Andover Press. The various chapters contain 
detailed descriptions of certain charm stones, gorgets, tubes, bird 
stones, and problematical forms. One of the most valuable features 
of the volume is the profusion of excellent illustrations, some of the 
plates being printed in color. 

In the July-September number of The Journal of American His- 


tory may be found, among other things, the following: an address 
on Democracy's Struggle for Exist ence, by Henry Clews; and the 
first installment of Recollections of Ninety-one Years in Connecticut 
and the Anthracite Region of Pennsylvania, by William H. Rich- 

The very timely topic of The World's Food is discussed in the 
November number of The Annals of the American Academy of Po- 
litical and Social Science. The numerous papers are grouped into 
four parts. The first part deals with the food situation with the 
neutrals and food for the allies ; part two with a basis for individual 
and national diets, and food conservation and utilisation ; part three 
with production and marketing plans for next year; and part four 
with price control. Among the papers in part four is one on the 
Constitutionality of Federal Regulation of Prices of Food and 
Fuels, by Clifford Thorne, formerly a Railroad Commissioner of 

What is Fair: A Study of Some Problems of Public Utility Regu- 
lation is the title of a small volume by William G. Raymond, Dean 
of the College of Applied Science in the State University of Iowa, 
which has been published by John Wiley & Sons. The five chapters 
of the book deal with general relationship, suitable control, rate 
control, fair return, and valuation. 

lowans will be much interested in an article on Recent Explora- 
tions on the Canadian Arctic Coast, by Rudolph Martin Anderson, 
an alumnus of the State University of Iowa, which appears in the 
October number of The Geographical Review. He tells of his ex- 
periences as the leader of the southern party of the expedition 
organized in 1913 by Vilhjalmur Stefansson, also an alumnus of the 
State University, who as the leader of the northern party of the 
expedition is still in the Far North. 

The Prussian Theory of Monarchy, by W. W. Willoughby ; Leg- 
islatures and Foreign Relations, by Denys P. Myers ; and Our Bung- 
ling Electoral System, by Joseph Cady Allen, are the three main 
articles in the November issue of The American Political Science 



Review. Th.e~ Legislative Notes and Reviews consist of notes on the 
Illinois legislature in 1917, and the index to State legislation. Ju- 
dicial Decisions on Public Law are reviewed by Robert E. Cushman. 
Americ'an war measures, British war administration, and the in- 
ternal political situation in Germany are subjects discussed at some 
length in the Notes and News, edited by Frederic A. Ogg. Finally, 
under the heading of Notes on International Affairs, Charles G. 
Fenwick discusses constructive peace proposals and the economic 


Historical Preparedness is the title of a paper by Solon J. Buck 
which appears in the December number of Library Notes and News 
published by the Minnesota Public Library Commission. 

Volume two of the Marietta College Historical Collections con- 
tains the concluding installment of The Records of the Original 
Proceedings of the Ohio Company, edited with introduction and 
notes by Archer Butler Hulbert. This volume contains the index 
to the two volumes thus far issued in this series. 

Ruth Putnam is the author of a monograph on California: The 
Name, which was published in December in the University of Cali- 
fornia Publications in History. 

Knute Emil Carlson is the author of a monograph on The Exer- 
cise of the Veto Power in Nebraska which appeared in November in 
j the Nebraska History and Political Science Series, edited by Addi- 
son E. Sheldon. 

County Government in Texas, by Herman G. James, constitutes 
number five of the Municipal Research Series published by the 
I University of Texas. 

H. N. Herrick and William Warren Sweet are the authors of A 
I History of the North Indiana Conference of the Methodist Epis- 
copal Church from its Organization in 1844 to the Present, which 
has been published by the W. K. Stewart Company of Indianapolis. 


It is a volume of about three hundred and seventy-five pages and 
gives evidence of careful preparation. 

Public Health in War Times, by Irving Fisher; The Background 
of the Great War, by Orin G. Libby ; The Bed Cross Movement, by 
H. E. French; The Universities and the War, by George R. Davies; 
Science in Relation to the Cause and Conduct of the War, by Frank 
Allen ; and After the War — Whatf, by Hugh E. Willis, are articles 
in the October number of The Quarterly Journal of the University 
of North Dakota. 

Wage Bargaining on the Vessels of the Great Lakes, by Henry 
Elmer Hoagland, is a recent monograph in the University of Illinois 
Studies in the Social Sciences. The five chapters deal with the be- 
ginnings of organization, growing concentration, trade agreements, 
disruption of the unions, and open shop. 

Number five of the Manuscripts from the Burton Historical Col- 
lection, published by Clarence M. Burton and edited by Agnes M. 
Burton, is largely taken up with the orderly book of Col. John P. 
Boyd and extracts covering the years 1811 and 1812. There is also 
a list of the soldiers at Detroit from 1797 to 1802. The remainder 
of the number, like the whole of number six, is devoted to further 
selections from the correspondence of William Henry Harrison. 

The Formation of the State of Oklahoma (1803-1906), by Roy 
Gittinger, is a monograph which constitutes volume six of the Uni- 
versity of California Publications in History. The twelve chapters 
deal with the beginnings of the Indian territory west of the Missis- 
sippi (including the Iowa country), the establishment of the larger 
Indian territory, the separation of Nebraska and Kansas from the 
Indian territory, the proposed State of Neosho, the Indian terri- 
tory during the Civil War, the reconstruction of the Indian terri- 
tory, the boomers, how the boomers won, four years of waiting, the 
settlement of Oklahoma Territory, the settlement of the Indian 
Territory, the admission of Oklahoma, and the eastern boundary of 
Oklahoma. The book contains considerable material concerning the 
Iowa, Sac and Fox, Pottawattamie, and Sioux Indians, members of 
which tribes previously lived in the Iowa country. 



One of the most important compilations of source material on the 
history of the Mississippi Valley which has appeared in recent years 
is the six-volume set of the Official Letter Books of W. C. C. Clai- 
horne 1801-1816, edited by Dunbar Rowland, and printed for the 
State Department of Archives and History of Mississippi. "William 
Charles Cole Claiborne was appointed Governor of Mississippi Ter- 
ritory in 1801. In 1803 he was appointed commissioner to take 
formal possession of Louisiana from France and he remained the 
provisional Governor of the newly acquired possession until Octo- 
ber, 1804, when he became Governor of the Territory of Orleans. 
He continued to serve in that capacity until the admission of 
Louisiana in 1812, after which he was twice elected Governor of the 
new State. In 1817 he was elected United States Senator, but died 
before taking his seat. These facts about the career of Governor 
Claiborne indicate something of the value of his official letter books 
to the student of lower Mississippi Valley history. 


Education in Americanism is the title of an address by Martin J. 
Wade which has been printed in pamphlet form. 

Preserving the Indian Mounds Along the Mississippi River, by 
Ellison Orr; and Conservation of Natural Scenery in Iowa, by 
Bohumil Shimek, are papers in the July-September number of 
Iowa Conservation. 

A pamphlet containing Fifteen Patriotic Editorials from the is- 
sues of The Des Moines Capital during the summer of 1917 is a 
recent item of lowana. 

Two articles, namely. Judicial Relaxation of the Carrier's Lia- 
bility, by R. M. Perkin. ; and Growth of State Power under the Fed- 
eral Constitution to Regulate Traffic in Intoxicating Liquors, by 
Charles H. Safely, appear in the November number of the Iowa 
Law Bulletin. 

Among the papers in the Proceedings of the Twenty-ninth An- 
nual Meeting of the Iowa Engineering Society is one by 0. E. 
Klingaman on The Commission-Manager Plan of City Government. 


In The Midland for October, November, and December there are 
installments of a series of poems entitled The Neighborhood, by 
Edwin Ford Piper, which have considerable interest from the his- 
torical standpoint. 

Indian Life and A Phase of the Language Question are subjects 
briefly treated in recent numbers of the University of Iowa Service 

Some war letters and biographical sketches of Dugald Porter and 
W. C. Hayward are among the contents of The Alumnus of Iowa 
State College for October. The November and December numbers 
both contain information concerning the activities of alumni and 
former students in war service. 

In the October, November, and December numbers of American 
Municipalities may be found the proceedings of the twentieth an- 
nual convention of the League of Iowa Municipalities. 

The July-September number of the Iowa Library Quarterly con- 
tains, among other things, some suggestions relative to The Library 
as a Collector of Local War History Material, by Edgar R. Harlan. 
The October-December number contains a digest of Iowa's response 
to the call of the American Library Association for a million dollar 
library fund for the government cantonments. 

The Wild Rose is the name of a small news sheet the publication 
of which was begun by the chaplain of the 168th Infantry (formerly 
the Third Regiment of the Iowa National Guard) in September. 

In the October number of The Iowa Alumnus there may be 
found, among other things, an article on The Iowa Child Welfare 
Research Station, by Carl E. Seashore; and a biographical sketch 
of Nathan R. Leonard. President Walter A. Jessup's convocation 
address on A Day of Ideals appears in the November issue, where 
the honor roll of alumni and former students in war service is be- 
gun. The honor roll is continued in the December number. 

Don W. Hutchinson is the writer of an article in the October 
number of The Iowa Magazine entitled The Story of a Dream Come 



True in which is related the history of water-power development on 
the Mississippi River culminating' in the construction of the Keokuk 
dam. The Wizardry of Metals at Keokuk is an article by G. Walter 
Barr; and under the heading of Leaders of the '^Fighting 54" 
there is a brief discussion of the Thirty-seventh General Assembly 
of Iowa. A short history of Fort Madison, by Charles E. Shafer, is 
printed in the December number. 

Continuations in the October number of the Journal of History 
published at Lamoni, Iowa, by the Reorganized Church of Jesus 
Christ of Latter Day Saints are : Voices and Visions of the Yester- 
days, by Vida E. Smith; and Freemasonry at Nauvoo, by Joseph E. 
Morcombe. New articles are: Senate Document 189, by Heman C. 
Smith; Crooked River Battle, by the same author; and Polygamy 
from an Official Standpoint, by the same author. 

A recent number of the Studies in the Social Sciences, edited by 
F. E. Haynes, and published by the State University of Iowa, con- 
sists of an interesting summary of Social Surveys of Three Rural 
Townships in Iowa, by Paul S. Peirce. Geographical features; 
population; economic conditions; housing, household conveniences, 
and sanitation; educational conditions and influences; religious 
conditions; and recreation, amusement, and social life are the sub- 
jects discussed. 

Prairie Gold is a unique volume of over three hundred and fifty 
pages published under the auspices of the Iowa Press and Author's 
Club. It is made up of a collection of articles, stories, poems, and 
cartoons by Iowa authors and artists; and represents the first co- 
operative attempt to place Iowa "on the map" as a producer of 
literature. Four artists ard about fifty writers contributed to the 
volume, the proceeds of the sale of which will be devoted to the 
work of the Red Cross. 

The Proceedings of the Twenty-third Annual Session of the Iowa 
State Bar Association, edited by H. C. Horack, contains the follow- 
ing papers and addresses : Education in Americanism, by Martin J . 
"Wade; Union or Confederation, by 0. D. Wheeler; The Commerce 

VOL. XVI — 9 


Clause, by D. 0. McGovney; Some Observations upon the Legal 
Profession, Past, Present, and Future, by William McNett; and 
Benjamin Franklin, by Burton Hanson. In the report of the com- 
mittee on legal biography appear sketches of the lives of the follow- 
ing members of the Iowa bar who died within the preceding year: 
M. L. Barrett, Thaddeus Binford, James Patrick Conway, Horace 
E. Deemer, Guy A. Feely, Albert T. Flickinger, Maxwell W. Frick, 
Thomas C. Gilpin, Emerson E. Hasner, John Hall Hutchinson, 
Walter Irish, Henry Jayne, John M. Johnson, Isaac D. Jones, 
Warren L. Livingston, Ernest L. McCoid, J. H. McConlogue, 
William Dempsey McCormick, Archer C. Miller, Charles Clinton 
Nourse, Maurice O'Connor, Eli C. Perkins, George W. Seevers, 
Louis Allen Smyres, Erastus B. Soper, and Charles 1. Yail. 


Anderson, Rudolph Martin, 

Recent Explorations on the Canadian Arctic Coast (The Geo- 
graphical Review, October, 1917). 
Botsford, George Willis, 

A Brief History of the World with Especial Reference to So- 
cial and Economic Conditions. New York: The Macmillan 
Co. 1917. 
Bowman, John Gabbert, 

Happy All Day Through. Chicago : P. F. VoUand Co. 1917. 
Brainerd, Eleanor Hoyt, 

How Could You Jean? Garden City: Doubleday, Page & Co. 
Chase, D. C, 

The Choice of Paris and Other Poems. Webster City: Pub- 
lished by the author. 1917. 
Clark, Dan Elbert, 

Samuel Jordan Kirkwood. Iowa City: The State Historical 
Society of Iowa. 1917. 

Historical Activities in the Trans-Mississippi Northwest, 1916- 
1917 (Mississippi Valley Historical Review, December, 



Cloyd, David Excelmons, 

Civics and Citizenship. Des Moines : Published by the author. 
Cooper, Elizabeth, 

The Heart of Sono San. New York: Frederick A. Stokes 
Co. 1917. 
Devine, Edward Thomas, 

Social Forces in War Time (several articles in the Survey, 
June-September, 1917). 
Ferber, Edna, 

Fanny Herself. New York : Frederick A. Stokes Co. 1917. 
Franklin, William Suddards, 

A Treatise on the Elements of Electrical Engineering. New 
York: The Macmillan Co. 1917. 
Griffith, Helen Sherman, 

Letty and Miss Grey. Philadelphia: Penn Publishing Co. 

Hall, James Norman, 

High Adventure (Atlantic Monthly, August, September, No- 
vember, 1917). 
Heilman, Ralph Emerson, 

Twenty Men Behind the Lines (System, September, 1917). 
Higbee, Frederick Goodson, 

The Essentials of Descriptive Geometry (2nd Revised Edition). 
New York: John Wiley & Sons. 1917. 
Hillis, Newell D wight. 

Why England Fights to Win (Canadian Magazine, November, 
Hoist, Bemhart Paul, 

Practical Home and School Methods of Study and Instruction 
in the Fundamental Elements of Education. Boone, Iowa: 
Hoist Publishing Co. 1917. 
Horack, H. Claude (Editor), 

Proceedings of the Twenty -third Annual Session of the Iowa 
State Bar Association. Iowa City: The State Bar Associa- 
tion. 1917. 


Iowa Authors, 

Prairie Gold. Chicago : Reilly & Britton Co. 1917. 
King, Irving, 

Permanence of Interests and their Relation to Abilities 
(School and Society, September 22, 1917). 
Knipe, Emilie B. and Alden Arthur Knipe, 

The Lost Little Lady. New York: The Century Co. 1917. 
Marsrton, Anson (Joint author), 

The Supporting Strength of Sewer Pipe in Ditches. Ames: 
Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechamc Arts. 1917. 
Miner, William Harvey, 

The American Indians North of Mexico. Cambridge: Cam- 
bridge University Press. 1917. 
Murphy, Thomas D., 

Oregon, the Picturesque. Boston : The Page Co. 1917. 
Parrish, Randall, 

The Devil's Own: A Romance of the Black Hawk War. Chi- 
cago : A. C. McClurg. 1917. 
Peirce, Paul S., 

Social Surveys of Three Rural Townships in Iowa. Iowa City: 
The State University of Iowa. 1917. 
Pelzer, Louis, 

Marches of the Dragoons in the Mississippi Valley. Iowa City : 

The State Historical Society of Iowa. 1917. 
The German Submarine Warfare Against the United States. 
Iowa City : The State University of Iowa. 
Piper, Edwin Ford, 

Barbed Wire and Other Poems. Iowa City: The Midland 
Press. 1917. 
Quaife, Milo Milton (Editor), 

The Indian Captivity of O. M. Spencer. Chicago : R. R. Don- 
nelley & Sons Co. 1917. 
Raymond, William G., 

What is Fair: A Study of Some Problems of Public Utility 
Regulation. New York : John Wiley & Sons. 1918. 
Richardson, Anna Stcese, 

Why Not Marry? Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Co. 1917. 



Ryan, John P., 

Department of Speech at Grinnell (Quarterly Journal of Pub- 
lic Speaking, July, 1917). 
Sabin, Edwin Legrand, 

How Are You Feeling Now? Boston: Little, Brown & Co. 

Opening the West with Lewis and Clark. Philadelphia : J. B. 

Lippincott Co. 1917. 
The Great Pike's Peak Rush, or Terry in the New Gold Fields. 
New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Co. 1917. 
Salter, William Mackintire, 

'Nietzsche the Thinker: A Study. New York: Henry Holt & 
Co. 1917. 
Stewart, George Walter, 

Shall Colleges Have a Definite Plan for the Selection of Grad- 
uate Students. Iowa City: The State University of Iowa. 

Thanet, Octave (Alice French), 

And the Captain Answered. Indianapolis : The Bobbs-Merrill 
Co. 1917. 
Wade, Martin J., 

Education in Americanism. Iowa City: Published by the 
author. 1917. 
Wagner, H. W., 

Electric Pumping with Results of Tests and Operating Rec- 
ords. Ames: Iowa State College of Agriculture and Me- 
chanic Arts. 1917. 
Whitney, Nathaniel D., 

The Contracting Field for Individualism (South Atlantic 
Quarterly, October, 1917). 
Willsie, Honore McCue, 

Benefits Forgot: A Story of Lincoln and Mother Love. New 
York : Frederick A. Stokes Co. 1917. 
Young, Lafayette, 

Fifteen Patriotic Editorials. Des Moines: The Des Moines 
Daily Capital. 1917. 



Roland Glenn of Center Junction Remembers Governor Ansel 
Briggs, in the Maquoketa Sentinel, September 18, 1917. 

Indian Fight Near Webster City, in the Wehster City Herald, Sep- 
tember 21, 1917. 

Iowa Civil War Loan, by Ivan L. Pollock, in the Clinton Herald, 
September 27, 28, 1917. 

Growth of the Public Library Movement in Iowa, in the Burlington 
Hawk-Eye, October 2, 1917. 

A Bit of War History in 1863, in the Washington Democrat, Octo- 
ber 2, 1917. 

Surviving Members of Sixth Iowa Infantry, in the Wapello Trib- 
une, October 4, 1917. 

The Story of the Army Draft When it First Came to Iowa, in the 
Panora Vedette, October 4, 1917. 

Schools of Early Iowa, in the Des Moines Plain Talk, October 11, 

Past and Forgotten Towns in Story County, by F. S. Smith, in the 

Nevada Journal, October 12, 1917. 
Iowa was Slow in the Early Preparations for the Civil War, in the 

Nevada Journal, October 15, 1917. 
Old Land Certificate of the Year 1848, in the Clinton Advertiser, 

October 17, 1917. 
Early Log Cabin History on the Shell Rock River, in the Charles 

City Intelligencer, October 18, 1917. 
Reunion of the Twenty-eighth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, in the 

Brooklyn Chronicle, October 18, 1917. 
Sketch of the Life of Judge Charles A. Dudley, in the Des Moines 

Tribune, October 19, 1917. 
Governor's Greys During the Civil War, in the Nevada Journal, 

October 19, 1917. 
The Frontier Sketches, running in the Burlington Post. 
Equipment of Iowa Troops During the Civil War, by Cyril B. 

Upham, in the Clinton Herald, October 23, 24, 25, 1917. 
Cost of Living in 1842, in the Cascade Pioneer, October 25, 1917. 



Sketch of the Life of Charles A. Dudley, in the Des Moines Plain 
Talk, October 25, 1917. 

National Peace Jubilee at Vicksburg, in the Waverly Independent- 
Bepuhlican, October 25, 1917. 

Semi-centennial of H. L. Spencer Company, in the Oskaloosa Her- 
ald, October 26, 1917. 

History of Grinnell and Poweshiek County, by Nettie Sanford, in 
the Grinnell Herald, October 30, November 1, 6, 9, 1917. 

Iowa in the "War of the Sixties, in the Oelwein Register, October 31, 

Prices During the Civil War, in the Stuart Herald, November 2, 

Eelic of Days when Paper was Produced at Cedar Falls, in the 
Cedar Falls Record, November 2, 1917. 

Civil War Reminiscences, by C. W. Moore, in the Storm Lake Trib- 
une, November 2, 1917. 

Sketch of the Life of Henry B. Blood, in the Keokuk Gate City, 
November 2, 1917. 

War Time Doings in Lyons in 1861, in the Clinton Herald, Novem- 
ber 5, 1917. 

Prices During the Civil War, in the Marshalltown Times-Repuh- 

lican, November 7, 1917. 
Old Time Editors, in the Sac City Sun, November 8, 1917. 
Sketch of the Life of George W. Sheeks, in the Alhia Republican, 

November 8, 1917. 
Sketch of the Life of William E. Rosemond, in the Independence 

Journal, November 8, 1917. 
Sketch of the Life of E. L. Currier, in the Independence Journal, 

November 8, 1917. 
Romance of the Keokuk Dam, by Don W. Hutchinson, in the Fair- 
field Tribune, November 9, 1917. 
Sherman's March, in the Boone Independent, November 9, 1917. 
An Afternoon Stroll in Des Moines Sixty-two Years Ago, by Tacitus 

Hussey, in the Des Moines Register, November 11, 1917. 
Reminiscences of Pioneer Days in Allamakee County, in the Wau- 

kon Republican, November 14, 1917. 


Sketch of the Life of Dr. Jacob Barr of Keokuk, in the Fort Madi- 
son Democrat, November 14, 1917. 
When Financing was a Real Problem, by Ivan L. Pollock, in the 

Des Moines Register, November 15, 1917. 
Market Conditions in Adair County in 1876, in the Algona Courier, 

November 15, 1917. 
Reminiscences of Civil War, by J. A. Campbell, in the Pocahontas 

Democrat, November 15, 1917. 
Conditions Now are Better than in 1861, by J. H. Galbreath, in the 

Zearing News, November 16, 1917, 
Sketch of the Life of Alfred Jarvis, in the Des Moines Plain Talk, 

November 22, 1917. 
Old Time Land Values, in the Dayton Review, November 22, 1917. 
Pioneers Talk of the Early Days, in the Ames Tribune, November 

22, 1917. 

Charles G. Patten — Iowa's Oldest Tree Breeder, in the Tama Her- 
ald, November 23, 1917. 

Pioneer Courts in Boonesboro and Vicinity, by Jackson Orr, in the 
Boone News-Republican, November 24, 1917. 

History of Waterloo Methodism, by Lotus Sarvay, in the Waterloo 
Courier, November 24, 1917. 

The Career of Alexander Moffit, by W. R. Boyd, in the Cedar Rap- 
ids Republican, November 25, 1917, and the Des Moines Regis- 
ter, December 6, 1917. 

Sketch of the Life of Gilbert S. Gilbertson, in the Marshalltown 
Times-Republican, November 26, 1917, and the Des Moines 
Plain Talk, November 29, 1917. 

Marker for Mormon Trail Across Cass County, in the Atlantic 
News-Telegraph, November 26, 1917. 

Prices During the Civil War, in the Knoxville Express, November 
29, 1917. 

Frank Mills, Editor, in the Des Moines Tribune, November 28, 

Thanksgiving in an Army Hospital During the Civil War, in the 
Manchester Democrat, November 29, 1917. 

What the Women Did in the Sixties for the Soldiers, in the Wash- 
ington Press, November 29, 1917. 



Events in the Life of Jason B. Packard, in the Bed Oak Express, 

November 30, 1917. 
Town of Frankfort, First County Seat of Montgomery County, in 

the Bed Oak Express, November 30, 1917. 
Experiences of Early Settlers, in the Bed Oak Express, November 

30, 1917. 

Story of Murder Sixty Years Ago, in the Bed Oak Express, No- 
vember 30, 1917. 

Montgomery County Past and Present, in the Bed Oak Express, 
November 30, 1917. 

Interesting Items Gleaned from Books of a Pioneer Storekeeper at 
lowaville, in the Des Moines Begister, November 30, 1917. 

The Iowa Civil War Bonds, by F. M. Mills, in the Des Moines Beg- 
ister, December 2, 1917. 

Iowa and War, by Cyril B. Upham, in the Clinton Herald, Decem- 
ber 3, 4, 5, 1917. 

First School House in Iowa was Log Cabin, in the Wehster City 

Journal, December 5, 1917. 
Brief History of Boone County's Old Court House, by C. L. Lucas, 

in the Madrid News, December 6, 1917. 
John Mahin on Stirring Times of Civil War, in the Davenport 

Democrat, December 10, 1917. 
Muscatine in the War, in the Davenport Democrat, December 10, 


Iowa Wesleyan University has New Records, in the Ottumwa Cour- 
ier, December 10, 1917. 

New History of Scott County Written by Dr. August P. Richter, in 
the Davenport Democrat, December 11, 1917. 

Claim Clubs of the Early Settlers, in the Boone News-BepuUican, 
December 12, 1917. 

Winterset History of Forty Years, by E. R. Zeller, in the Winterset 
News, December 12, 1917. 

Personal Observations on Siege of Vicksburg, by T. E. Blanchard, 
running in the Preston Times. 

Our Historic Flag, an Incident of the Dubuque Sanitary Fair, by 
B. F. Reed, in the Algona Courier, December 13, 1917. 


The Little Red School House, in the Cedar Rapids Republican, De- 
cember 16, 1917. 

Early Army Posts in Pioneer Iowa, in the Nevada Journal, Decem- 
ber 17, 1917. 

Sketch of the Life of Rev. Dr. Alvah L. Frisbie, in the Bes Moines 
Tribune, December 18, 1917. 

Indian Wars in Iowa in Pioneer Days, in the Nevada Journal, De- 
cember 21, 1917. 

Sketch of the Life of Martin L. Burke, Early Stage-driver, in the 
Madrid News, December 27, 1917. 

Sanitary Fairs in Iowa, by Earl S. Fullbrook, in the Clinton Her- 
ald, December 28, 1917. 

Making the Indian a Self Supporter, in the Vinton Times, Decem- 
ber 28, 1917. 

Iowa and War, by Cyril B. Upham, in the Mason City Times, De- 
cember 29, 30, 1917. 

Diary of Waterloo Pioneer, in the Waterloo Courier, December 31, 



The greater part of The Georgia Historical Quarterly for De- 
cember is taken up with Official Letters of Governor John Martin, 

Gottfried Duden's ''Report/' 1824-1827, translated by William 
G. Bek; Missouri and the War, by Floyd C. Shoemaker; and Mis- 
sourians Abroad: George Wylie Paul Hunt, by Ivan H. Epperson, 
are contributions in the October number of The Missouri Historical 

A biographical sketch of Franklin Benjamin Sanborn, A. B., by 
Victor Channing Sanborn, appears in the October number of The 
New England Historical and Genealogical Register. 

Among the contributions in the October number of The Catholic 
Historical Review are the following: Origin of American Aborig- 
ines: A Famous Controversy, by Herbert F. "Wright; The Church 
in Spanish American History, by Julius Klein; and Catholic 
Church Annals of Kansas City (1800-1859), by William Kenenhof. 

Among the articles in the Historical Collections of the Essex In- 
stitute for October is one on John Rogers: Sculptor of American 

Among the contents of the Proceedings of the American Anti- 
quarian Society at the meeting of April 11, 1917, may be noted a 
short article on Types of Prehistoric Southwestern Architecture, by 
J. Walter Fewkes; and a continuation of Clarence S. Brigham's 
Bibliography of American Newspapers, 1690-1820. 

The Public Document Division of the Wisconsin Historical Li- 
brary is described by Anna W. Evans in Bulletin of Information 
No. 87, published by the State Historical Society of Wisconsin. 



The combined April- June and July-September numbers of The 
Quarterly Publication of the Historical and Philosophical Society 
of Ohio are devoted to a reprint of J. H. Daviess ' View of the Pres- 
ident's Conduct Concerning the Conspiracy of 1806, edited by 
Isaac Joslin Cox and Helen A. Swineford. 

A biographical sketch of the late Professor Marion Dexter 
Learned, by Joseph G. Rosengarten, is published in the September- 
December number of the German American Annals. 

Two contributions of more than local interest in volume fifteen of 
the Proceedings and Collections of the Wyoming Historical and 
Geological Society of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, are: a lengthy, 
illustrated description of ^'The Alfred Franklin Berlin Collection' ' 
of American Indian Artifacts in the Possession of this Society, by 
Alfred F. Berlin; and The Reminiscences of General Isaac Jones 
Wistar, TJ. S. A., by Charles B. Dougherty. 

The Chetek and Rice Lakes, by Charles E. Brown and Robert H. 
Becker ; and a tribute to the memory of the late William H, Ells- 
worth, are contributions in the October number of The Wisconsin 

Tract No. 97 of the Western Reserve Historical Society contains, 
in addition to the annual report and some miscellaneous routine 
material, a number of important historical source materials, edited 
by Elbert Jay Benton, and entitled Side Lights on the Ohio Com- 
pany of Associates from the John May Papers. Especially are 
there numerous letters written by William Rufus Putnam. 

Oral Tradition and History is the title of a short article by 
Robert H. Lowie, in the April- June number of The Journal of 
American Folk-lore. 

Four articles appear in The American Historical Review for 
October, namely: A Case of Witchcraft, by George L. Kittredge; 
The Lords of Trade and Plantations, by Winfred T. Root; The Mis- 
sion as a Frontier Institution in the Spanish- American Colonies, by 
Herbert E. Bolton ; The History of German Socialism Reconsidered, 
by Carlton J. H. Hayes. 



The Manila Galleon and California, by William L. Schurg ; Notes 
on Early Texas Newspapers, 1819-1836, by Eug-ene C. Barker; 
The Archivo General de Indias, by Charles E. Chapman; and Con- 
temporary Poetry of the Texas Revolution, by Alex Dienst, are con- 
tributions in The Southwestern Historical Quarterly for October. 
There is also another installment of British Correspondence Conr- 
cerning Texas, edited by Ephraim Douglass Adams. 

A Record of the San Foil Indians is the subject of an article by 
E. D. Gwydir, which occupies the opening pages in The Washington 
Historical Quarterly for October. Then follow some Pioneer Rem- 
iniscences, by Oscar Canfield, who went with his parents from Iowa 
to Oregon in 1847. Port Orchard Fifty Years Ago, by W. B. Sey- 
mour; David Thompson's Journeys in the Spokane Country, by 
T. C. Elliott; Washington Geographic Names, by Edmond S. 
Meany ; and some letters illustrative of the Attitude of the Hudson's 
Bay Company During the Indian War of 1855-1856, edited by 
Clarence B. Bagley, are other contributions. 

A monograph on John Stuart: Superintendent of Indian Affairs 
for the Southern District, by George B. Jackson; and a biograph- 
ical sketch of William Ferrell, by Roscoe Nunn, are printed in the 
September number of the Tennessee Historical Magazine. The doc- 
uments in this number consist of some correspondence of John Bell 
and Willie Mangum, and some letters of John Bell to William B. 
Campbell, edited by St. George L. Sioussat. 

Sieur de Vincennes Identified, by Pierre-Georges Roy ; and Mor- 
gan's Raid in Indiana, by Louis B. Ewbank, are monographs which 
constitute numbers one and two of volume seven of the Indiana 
Historical Society Puhlications. 

Articles which appear in the Ohio Archaeological and Historical 
Quarterly for October are: Mac-o-chee Valley, by Keren Jane 
Gaumer; Johnson's Island, by Hewson L. Peeke; Muskingum River 
Pilots: Their Duties and Requirements, by Irven Travis; Henry 
Bouquet: his Indian Campaigns^ by J. C. Reeve; and a detailed 
description of The Hayes Memorial sd Fremont, Ohio. Here will 


also be found the proceedings of the thirty-second annual meeting 
of the Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Society. 

The belated January, 1917, number of the Journal of the Illinois 
State Historical Society opens with a paper by Joseph J. Thompson, 
entitled Penalties of Patriotism: an Appreciation of the Life, Patri- 
otism and Services of Francis Vigo, Pierre Gihault, George Rogers 
Clark and Arthur St. Clair, '^The Founders of the Northwest*'. 
Other articles are: Eev. Colin Dew James, a Pioneer Methodist 
Preacher of Early Illinois, by Edmund J. James ; Some Beginnings 
in Central Cass County, Illinois, by William Epler; Early Women 
Preachers, by Mrs. Katherine Stahl ; and Times When Lincoln Be- 
memhered Albion, by Walter Colyer. 

The opening pages of the Michigan History Magazine for October 
are occupied by Civil War Letters, written by Washington Gard- 
ner. Among the other numerous contributions are the following: 
Government Survey and Charting of the Great Lakes from the Be- 
ginning of the Work in 1841 to the Present, by John Fitzgibbon; 
Michigan and the Holland Immigration of 1847, by Gerrit Van 
Schelvin ; and Holland Emigration to Michigan: Its Causes and Re- 
sults, by Gerrit J. Diekema. There is also a descriptive list of the 
papers of Governor Austin Blair in the Burton Library at Detroit. 

The opening contribution in the Indiana Magazine of History for 
September is a monograph by Charles Zimmerman on The Origin 
and Rise of the Republican Party in Indiana from 1854 to 1860, 
which is concluded in the December number. A very entertaining 
paper on The Pioneer Aristocracy, by Logan Esarey ; and a discus- 
sion of The Underground Railroad in Monroe County, by Henry 
Lester Smith, are also to be found in the September number; while 
an additional contribution in December is an interesting paper on 
Lincoln in Indiana, by J. Edward Murr. 

T. C. Elliott discusses the question of Where is Point Vancouver? 
in the opening pages of The Quarterly of the Oregon Historical So- 
ciety for June. John E. Rees writes on the subject of Idaho — Its 
Meaning, Origin and Application. In the September number there 



is an interesting article on The Pioneer Stimulus of Gold, by Leslie 
M. Scott. Installments of the biography of Hall Jackson Kelley — 
Prophet of Oregon, by Fred Wilbur Powell, are to be found in both 

A study of The Development of Banking in Minnesota, by Syd- 
ney A. Patchin, occupies about sixty pages in the Minnesota His- 
tory Bulletin for August. There are also two short articles: 
Historical Activities in War Time, by Solon J. Buck; and The 
Preservation of Newspapers, by John Talman. The November 
number is considerably larger than the average issue of the Bul- 
letin, over one hundred pages being devoted to Recollections of 
Minnesota Experiences, by Theodore E. Potter. lowans will be 
particularly interested in the brief reminiscences of the Spirit Lake 
massacre and the longer account of the massacre at New Ulm. 

Among the articles in the September number of The History 
Teachers' Magazine is one by Evarts B. Greene offering Sugges- 
tions on the Relation of American to European History. Two 
papers in the October number are : English Foundations of Amer- 
ican Institutional Life, by St. George L. Sioussat; and A Renais- 
sance in Military History, by E. M. Violette. A brief account of 
the National Board for Historical Service appears in the November 
issue, where there is also, among other things, a paper on The 
American Revolution and the British Empire, by Evarts B. Greene. 
Democracy and War, by J. G. Randall; The Holy Alliance: Its 
Origins and Influence, by W. S. Robertson ; and The Importance of 
the Agricultural Revolution, by Raymond G. Taylor, are articles in 
the December number. 

Frederic L. Paxson's entertaining address on The Rise of Sport 
is the opening contribution in the September number of The Mis- 
sissippi Valley Historical Review. Of special interest to lowans is 
an article by B. H. Schockel on the Settlement and Development of 
the Lead and Zinc Mining Region of the Driftless Area with Spe- 
cial Emphasis upon Jo Daviess County, Illinois. James A. James 
is the writer of a valuable paper on Spanish Influence in the West 
During the American Revolution. Lawrence J. Burpee presents a 


survey of Historical Activities in Canada, 1916-1917. The follow- 
ing articles appear in the December number: Howell Cohh and the 
Crisis of 1850, by R. P. Brooks; A Larger View of the Yellowstone 
Expedition, 1819-1820, by Cardinal Goodwin; The Beginnings of 
British West Florida, by Clarence E. Carter; and Historical Activ- 
ities in the Trans-Mississippi Northwest, 1916-1917, by Dan E. 
Clark. In the ''Notes and Documents" there is an extract from the 
Journal of John Sutherland, edited by Ella Lonn. 

The latest addition to the list of quarterly periodicals published 
by State historical societies is The Wisconsin Magazine of History, 
published by the State Historical Society of Wisconsin under the 
editorship of Milo M. Quaife, the first issue appearing in Septem- 
ber. The first contribution in this number is an article by Milo M. 
Quaife on Increase Allen Lapham, First Scholar of Wisconsin. 
John L. Bracklin describes A Forest Fire in Northern Wisconsin; 
and Louise P. Kellogg discusses Bankers' Aid in 1861-62. Under 
the heading of "Documents" there is a contribution of particular 
interest to lowans, namely, The Diary of Harvey Beid: Kept at 
Madison in the Spring of 1861, with introduction and notes by 
Milo M. Quaife. Mr. Reid, whose portrait accompanies the diary, 
was a resident of Jackson County, Iowa, from 1865 to the time of 
his death in 1910, and he was the author of a biography of Thomas 
Cox, published by The State Historical Society of Iowa. In a de- 
partment called "Historical Fragments", among other things, there 
is a note on the spelling of the name Jolliet. One of the editorials 
has to do with the Nelson Dewey Park and the first capitol of Wis- 
consin Territory at Belmont. There are also departments entitled 
"Question Box" and "Survey of Historical Activities". The new 
periodical is attractive in appearance, and should prove a very 
popular and valuable feature of the work of the Society. 


The next annual meeting of the Mississippi Valley Historical 
Association will be held in May at Minneapolis. 

The thirty-third annual meeting of the American Historical As- 



sociation was held in Philadelphia on December 27-29, 1917, in 
connection with the annual meetings of several allied associations. 

At the last session of the legislature of California an appropria- 
tion of $12,500 was made for the support of the California His- 
torical Survey Commission, which was created by law in 1915. 
The commission has already made a thorough survey of materials 
in county archives and has discovered valuable papers and docu- 
ments in private collections. 

The Madrid Historical Society is rapidly acquiring a large col- 
lection of relics illustrating pioneer life, judging from the reports 
of the president and curator, Mr. C. L. Lucas. 

The Allamakee County Historical and Genealogical Society con- 
tinues to perform a valuable service by inducing early settlers to 
write their recollections for publication in the newspapers. For 
instance, some interesting Reminiscences of Pioneer Days, written 
by Mrs. Jennie Leui from memoranda of conversations with her 
parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Orr, appeared in the Waukon Bepub- 
lican, November 14, 1917. 

A movement is on foot in Montana to reorganize the state his- 
torical society which has been practically inactive for several years. 
Furthermore, the chancellor of the university has appointed a 

University commission on Montana history" consisting of F. H. 
Garver, chairman, A. L. Stone, M. L. Wilson, H. H. Swain, and 
P. C. Phillips. The main object of the commission is to publish a 
quarterly series of monographs relative to the history of the state, 
the first number of which it is hoped will appear early in 1918. 

Among the recent acquisitions of the Historical Department of 
lowia at Des Moines are some account books of John D. Baker, an 
early merchant at the old town of lowaville on the Des Moines 
River. They shed much light on the cost of living in Iowa sixty- 
five years ago. The Department has also received a large and inter- 
esting collection of Civil "War relics, donated by Rev. H. H. Green 
of Decorah. The activities of the Department during the past few 
months include the preparation of a monument to mark the Mor- 

VOL. XVI — 10 


mon Trail at Lewis in Cass County, and the plans for the making 
of a directory of Iowa men in military service during the present 

The Historical Society of Marshall County held a memorial meet- 
ing early in November in honor of the deceased members of the 
Society. Among others, there were tributes to T. P. Marsh and 
J. L. Carney, the latter of whom was formerly the president of the 
Society. At a meeting on November 27th the principal paper was 
one by Aaron Palmer on The Marking of Historic Places. Late in 
December the Society let the contract for a granite monument to 
mark the burial-place of ''Johnny Green", the Pottawattamie In- 
dian chief who befriended the early settlers and protected them 
against unfriendly Indians. The example set by the Society in this 
movement is worthy of emulation by other local historical societies 
in Iowa. 

The semicentennial of admission into the union was properly 
celebrated by Nebraska. The exact date of the anniversary, March 
1, was observed by the legislature and the public schools. At the 
Aksarben festival in Omaha in October there was presented a 
pageant of Nebraska history, under the direction of Mr. John L. 
Webster, at that time president of the Nebraska state historical 
society. President and Mrs. Wilson were guests of Omaha on this 
occasion. The main feature of the celebration occurred at Lincoln 
on June 12-14 under the direction of the state historical society, 
the state university, and the Lincoln commercial club. The his- 
torical society arranged an historical exhibit in the city auditorium 
which was visited by thousands of people. Moving pictures and 
lantern slides depicting episodes in Nebraska history were shown. 
Lectures were given afternoon and evening by the superintendent 
of the society, Mr. A. E. Sheldon. The most interesting phase of 
the three days' celebration was a pageant entitled "Nebraska: a 
semicentennial masque ' 


A volume on the Spirit Lake Massacre, written by Mr. Thomas 
Tcaklc, will probably be put to press within a few weeks. 



Two volumes have been distributed by the Society since October, 
namely, a biography of Samuel Jordan Kirkwood, Governor of 
Iowa during the Civil War, by Dan E. Clark; and a volume dealing 
with Marches of the Dragoons in the Mississippi Valley, by Louis 

Three pamphlets in the series entitled Iowa and War have been 
issued since November, as follows: Iowa and War, being a brief 
summary of the part played by Iowa in various wars, by Cyril B. 
Upham; Sanitary Fairs — a Method of Raising Funds for Belief 
Worh in Iowa During the Civil War, by Earl S. Fullbrook; and 
Old Fort Madison: Early Wars on the Eastern Border of the Iowa 
Country, by Jacob Van der Zee. 

The following persons have recently been elected to membership 
in the Society: Mr. Mitchell Pirie Briggs, Fresno, California; Mr. 
Earl S. Fullbrook, Iowa City, Iowa; Miss Althea R. Sherman, 
McGregor, Iowa; Hon. John T. Adams, Dubuque, Iowa; Hon. W. 
S. Allen, Des Moines, Iowa; Professor B. T. Baldwin, Iowa City, 
Iowa; Mrs. Clara Cooley Becker, Dubuque, Iowa; Mrs. Cora E. 
Chapin, Union, Iowa; Hon. Herbert A. Huff, Eldora, Iowa; Mr. 
"W. 0. Payne, Des Moines, Iowa; Hon. Truman A. Potter, Mason 
City, Iowa; Dean "Wm. F. Russell, Iowa City, Iowa; Hon. W. C. 
Stuckslager, Lisbon, Iowa; Mr. A. L. Urick, Des Moines, Iowa; 
Hon. H. M. Havner, Des Moines, Iowa; Dr. E. B. Howell, Ottum- 
wa, Iowa; Hon. Harry E. Hull, Williamsburg, Iowa; Adj. Gen. 
Guy E. Logan, Des Moines, Iowa; Miss Hettie W. Seifert, Musca- 
tine, Iowa ; Mr. Jay J. Sherman, Luverne, Iowa ; and Hon. Burton 
E. Sweet, Waverly, Iowa. 

On Thursday evening, November 8th, at the time of the confer- 
ence of the Association of American Universities at Iowa City, the 
Political Science Club of the State University held a meeting in the 
I rooms of the Society. Brief addresses were given by Dean Charles 
i H. Haskins of Harvard University; Dean Herman V. Ames of 
f , Pennsylvania University ; Dr. George H. Bamett of Johns Hopkins 
I University; Dean Albion W. Small of Chicago University; Dean 


F. W. Blackmar of the University of Kansas; Dr. William J. 
Kerby of the Catholic University at Washing-ton, D. C. ; Professor 
Henry R. Spencer of Ohio State University; Dean Isidor Loeb of 
the University of Missouri; Dean Kendric C. Babcock of the Uni- 
versity of Illinois; and Mr. D. D. Murphy, President of the Iowa 
State Board of Education. 


The twenty-eighth annual meeting of the Iowa Library Associa- 
tion was held at Iowa City on October 9-11, 1917. 

President Frank L. McYey, who for eight years has been at the 
head of the University of North Dakota, resigned in August and in 
October left the institution to take up his new duties as president 
of the University of Kentucky. 

Late in October the Wayne County Bar Association held a memo- 
rial meeting in the honor of the late Judge W. H. Tedford, who for 
several years was one of the appointive Curators of The State His- 
torical Society of Iowa. 

Dr. George Willis Botsford, whose work in the field of Greek and 
Roman history ranks him high among American scholars, died on 
December 14th. Dr. Botsford was born at West Union, Iowa, on 
May 9, 1862. 

A beautiful regimental flag has been sent to the old Third Iowa 
Regiment by the State Society of the Daughters of the American 
Revolution. This regiment is now the 168th Infantry and is a part 
of the famous Rainbow Division. 

The Department of Public Instruction, following the plan in- 
augurated last year, issued a pamphlet containing data to be used 
in connection with the observance of *'Iowa Week'^ (the first week 
in October) and "Iowa Day" (October 5th) in the public schools 
of the State. 

A newspaper item relates the interesting fact that Company B, 
109th Engineers, formerly Company B, First Iowa Engineers, of 
Council Bluffs, has in its possession the instruments used by the late 
General Grenville M. Dodge in surveying for the Union Pacific 



On October 9tli occurred the death of Brigadier-General Hiram 
M. Cliittenden at the age of fifty-nine. His name is well known to 
all students of western American history because of his important 
historical works dealing with the fur trade in the West and the 
early navigation of the Mississippi River. 

A unique event, which probably could not be duplicated in a very 
large number of cases, occurred at Oskaloosa on October 26, 1917, 
when the H. L. Spencer Company, wholesale grocers, observed its 
semi-centennial anniversary. 

Charles A. Dudley, who has been engaged in the practice of law 
in Des Moines since 1867, died on October 18, 1917, at the age of 
seventy-eight. Since 1913 he has been Judge of the District Court 
of Polk County. 

The Civic Forum is an organization at Ames which has displayed 
much interest in the State and local history of Iowa. At a meeting 
in November a number of pioneers related their recollections of the 
early days in this State. 

Rev. Dr. Alvah L. Frisbie, who was pastor of the Plymouth Con- 
gregational Church of Des Moines for twenty-seven years, died on 
December 16, 1917. Dr. Frisbie retired from the pastorate in 1898, 
but has continued to play an active and influential part in the af- 
fairs of the church down to the time of his death. 

This year will occur the diamond jubilee anniversary of Iowa 
Wesleyan University at Mt. Pleasant. One very valuable feature 
of the plans for the proper observance of this anniversary is the 
issuance of a complete alumni record and directory. 

The Grant Memorial Fountain in the city park at Atlantic, Iowa, 
erected in 1886, is said to have been the first memorial in the United 
States erected to Ulysses S. Grant after his death. 

Gilbert S. Gilbertson, former State Senator and State Treasurer 
of Iowa, died at Des Moines on November 25, 1917. He was born 
at Spring Grove, Minnesota on October 17, 1863, and came to Iowa 
when sixteen years of age. For eight years, beginning in 1889, he 
served as clerk of the district court in Winnebago County. He was 



a Senator in the Twenty-sixth and Twenty-seventh General As- 
semblies, and State Treasurer from 1901 to 1907. 

Due largely to the activities of Mr. F. H. Garver of the state 
normal school at Dillon, formerly of Morningside College, Sioux 
City, Iowa, and a member of the research staff of The State His- 
torical Society of Iowa, much interest in the marking of historic 
sites has been aroused in Montana. The Mullen trail, a famous 
government wagon road running from old Fort Benton, Montana, 
to Walla Walla, Washington, has recently been marked at eight 
different places by monuments about twelve feet in height and cost- 
ing from $1500 to $2000 each. A monument has been erected at 
Goodcreek to mark the spot where gold was first discovered in 
Montana. Nine markers, some temporary and some permanent, 
have been placed along the route of the Custer expedition and the 
Bozeman expedition of 1874. About twenty camps and several 
battlefields along these routes have been identified. 



Cykil B. TJpham, Fellow in Political Science at the State 
University of Iowa. Member of The State Historical Society 
of Iowa. Bom in Wisconsin on September 1, 1894. Gradu- 
ated from Morningside College, Sioux City, in 1915. Received 
the degree of Master of Arts at the State University of Iowa 
in 1917. 

Ivan L. Pollock, Instructor in Political Science at the State 
University of Iowa. (See The Iowa Journal op History and 
Politics for January, 1917, p. 152.) 



Iowa Journal 

H i story eavd Pol it ics 

APRIL 1918 

DwamlMr 2S 1902 *t lows Cltj Iow» as »Mond-«lMi mutter unier act of Oonsteo oi ^»3y « 

Associate Editor, DAN CLARK 

Vol XVI 

APRIL 1918 

No. 2 


Relief Work m Iowa During the Civil War 

Earl S. Fullbrook 

The Death of General Albert Sidney Johnston on the 
Battlefield of Shiloh Joseph W, Rich 

Some Publications 
Western Americana 

Historical Societies 

Notes and Comnaent 




Copyright 1918 hy The ^tate Historical Society of Iowa 




Su.^ acEi PTioN Pruci: $2.00 Sinolb Numb»e: 50 0»NT.s 

Address all CommunioationB to 
Thi State Histoeioal Society Iowa CiTt Iowa 



VOL. XVI — 11 


The American Red Cross, the Army Y. M. C. A., and the 
Knights of Columbus are recognized as vital factors in the 
conduct of the present World War. Similarly during the 
Civil War there were such organizations as the United 
States Sanitary Commission, the Western Sanitary Com- 
mission, and the United States Christian Commission, which 
undertook the work of looking after the health, comfort, 
and general morale of the soldiers. In addition to the gen- 
erous contributions which the people of Iowa made to these 
organizations, they formed local relief agencies through 
which they worked. It is the purpose of this paper to 
present a general discussion of the three large national 
commissions, and afterwards a more detailed account of 
the activities of the people of Iowa in the interests of the 
welfare of the soldiers and their families. 



The Civil War had scarcely begun when, during the last 
days of April, 1861, there was held in New York City what 
was up to that time probably the largest council of women 
ever assembled in the United States.^ It was at this meet- 
ing, called by the women of New York, that the Women ^s 
Central Association of Relief was organized for the pur- 
pose of assisting in caring for the soldiers in the Union 
armies so rapidly being raised. The organization proposed 

1 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Eeview, 
Vol. XCVIII, p. 154. 



to furnish comforts, stores, and nurses in aid of the Med- 
ical Staff of the United States Army and to so organize 
the benevolent efforts of the women of all the loyal States 
that these efforts might result in the greatest possible ad- 
vantage to the Union cause. To accomplish this purpose a 
plan was evolved to establish definite relations with the 
medical statf, which plan, when eventually achieved, re- 
sulted in the formation of the United States Sanitary 


This result, however, was not brought about without 
overcoming many difficulties. When the members of the 
medical stalf were approached by a committee of New York 
citizens representing the women of the city with the pro- 
posal to establish a civilian commission to aid and advise 
them, they at once expressed their disapproval and made it 
evident that they would not look with favor upon any aid 
or interference from the outside. They replied that the 
government was ready and willing to supply everything 
the soldiers needed or could need ; that the Medical Depart- 
ment was fully aroused to its duties, and perfectly com- 
petent to them; and that it would be an uncalled-for 
confession of delinquency and poverty to admit that the 
army needed, or would need, anything that the government 
and the Medical Department were not able and willing to 
furnish.''^ The medical staff thought the zeal of the 
women and the activity of the men assisting them, super- 
fluous, obtrusive, and likely to grow troublesome", and be- 
lieved that the part of the general public in contributing to 
the relief of the soldiers would be small.^ 

2 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 42, 43. 

3 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Beview, 
Vol. XCVIII, p. 159. 

■♦Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 44. 


The New York organization was not discouraged, how- 
ever, and reenforced by the support of certain medical soci- 
eties of the city, continued the agitation which had been 
begun. A delegation of physicians was sent to Washington 
to investigate the matter and see what they could accom- 
plish. After convincing themselves that some commission 
to aid the medical authorities was a dire necessity, the dele- 
gation offered various proposals for the creation and oper- 
ation of such a body.^ Sanitary commissions had been 
organized during the Crimean and Indian wars, and these 
men were convinced that such a commission should be 
formed for service during the Civil War.^ They met many 
rebukes and setbacks. Their patriotic and unselfish motives 
were not always appreciated: often it was insinuated that 
they were aiming at selfish ends. One secretary ^'begged'' 
them ''to state frankly, precisely what they wanted, as it 
was evident to him that they could not want only what they 
seemed to be asking for. ' ' President Lincoln himself char- 
acterized the plan as adding a ^' fifth wheel to the coach 
One writer suggested that it was during long waits in 
^'anterooms'' for interviews with various government of- 
ficials that members of the commission first conceived the 
idea, which they later carried out, of providing meals for 
the disabled soldiers waiting their turn at the paymaster's 


In spite of many discouragements the advocates of a com- 
mission finally obtained the approval of all the necessary 

5 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 50-53. 

6 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Beview, 
Vol. XCVIII, p. 372. 

7 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 58. 

8 The United States Sanitary Commission in The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. XIX, 
p. 420. 


authorities to a plan which they had submitted. The plan, 
as set forth in a letter of May 18, 1861, addressed to the 
Secretary of War by the New York delegation, proposed 
*Hhat a mixed Commission of civilians distinguished for 
their philanthropic experience and acquaintance with sani- 
tary matters, of medical men, and of military officers, be 
appointed by the Government, who shall be charged with 
the duty of investigating the best means of methodizing and 
reducing to practical service the already active but undi- 
rected benevolence of the people toward the Army; who 
shall consider the general subject of the prevention of 
sickness and suffering among the troops and suggest the 
wisest methods, which the people at large can use to mani- 
fest their good-will towards the comfort, security, and 
health of the Army.'^^ Mr. Woods, the acting Surgeon- 
General, consented to the plan and in a letter to the Secre- 
tary of War expressed his opinion that the Medical 
bureau would .... derive important and useful aid 
from the counsels and well-directed efforts of an intelligent 
and scientific commission, to be styled, ^A Commission of 
Inquiry and Advice in respect to the Sanitary Interests of 
the United States Forces,* and acting in co-operation with 
the Bureau in elaborating and applying such facts as might 
be elicited from the experience and more extended observa- 
tion of those connected with armies, with reference to the 
diet and hygiene of troops and the organization of military 
hospitals ' He made it clear that the Commission was not 
to interfere with the existing organization of the medical 
department, but was intended merely to strengthen it, and 
suggested that its particular field of service would be with 
the volunteers.^^ 

» Documents of the U. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. I, No. 1, p. 2. 
10 Documents of the V. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. I, No. 2, p. 2. 


The Secretary of War issued an order on June 9, 1861, 
appointing Henry W. Bellows, A. D. Bache, Jeffries Wy- 
man, W. H. Van Buren, Wolcott Gibbs, Samuel G. Howe, 
Surgeon-General R. C. Wood, G. W. Cullum, and Alexander 
E. Shiras, as **A Commission of Inquiry and Advice in 
respect to the Sanitary Interests of the United States 
Forces''. These men were to serve without pay, and a 
room in Washington was given to them free of charge for 
use as headquarters. The order read that the Commission 
should direct its inquiries to the principles and practices 
connected with the inspection of recruits and enlisted men ; 
to the sanitary condition of the volunteers ; to the means of 
preserving and restoring the health, and of securing the 
general comfort and efficiency of troops ; to the proper pro- 
vision of cooks, nurses, and hospitals ; and to other subjects 
of like nature ".^^ The hopes of the men and women who 
proposed the Commission had been realized, but there *^can, 
it is feared, be little doubt that the appointment of the Com- 
mission was at last consented to as if it had been a Hub 
thrown to the popular whale. ' ' ' 

The members of the Commission met in Washington on 
June 12, 1861, organized, and formulated plans for conduct- 
ing their work.^^ At this first meeting Dr. Elisha Harris 
and Dr. Cornelius R. Agnew were added to the member- 
ship.^^ The Rev. Henry W. Bellows was elected president 

11 Documents of the TJ. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. I, No. 2, pp. 6, 7 ; 
Eeed's The Heroic Story of the United States Sanitary Commission, 1861- 
1865, p. 5. 

12 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 58. 

13 Professor Wyman declined his appointment and consequently was not 
present at this meeting. — Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Com- 
mission, p. 64. 

1* Those added during the war were Rt. Rev. Bishop Clark, R. W. Burnett, 
Mark Skinner, Joseph Holt, Horace Binney, Jr., Rev. J. H. Heywood, Fairman 
Rogers, J. Huntington Wolcott, Chas. J. StilM, E. B. M'Cagg, and Frederick 
Law Olmsted. — Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, 
p. 64. 


and Frederick Law Olmsted became secretary. Tlie secre- 
tary, with headquarters at Washington, was made the chief 
executive and to him fell the work of directing the organiza- 
tion.^^ Mr. Olmsted was at that time the superintendent of 
the Central Park in New York and ^^his appointment was 
universally regarded as a sure guarantee of the success of 
the Commission's plans. '^^^ 


A plan of operation was drawn up by President Bellows, 
adopted by the Commission, and approved by the Secretary 
of War and by President Lincoln. It called for a division 
of the Commission into two main committees or branches, 
one of inquiry, the other of advice, with sub-committees 
under each. The first branch was to conduct an inquiry as 
to *Hhe condition and wants of the troops''. Its duty was 
to discover ^^what must be the condition and want of troops 
gathered together in such masses, so suddenly, and with 
such inexperience? .... What is their condition?", 
and *^What ought to be their condition, and how would 
Sanitary Science bring them up to the standard of the high- 
est attainable security and efficiency!" The object of the 
second branch was ^'to get the opinions and conclusions of 
the Commission approved by the Medical Bureau, ordered 
by the War Department, carried out by the officers and men, 
and encouraged, aided, and supported by the benevolence 
of the public at large, and by the State governments. ' ' ^'^ 

The main purpose of the Commission from the beginning 
was to furnish a preventive service, and the plan of opera- 
tion adopted was largely along such lines. At the same time 

i-""' Documents of the U. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. I, No. 3, pp. 4, 5, 6. 
1 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 76. 
17 Documents of the TJ. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. I, No. 3, pp. 1-4; 
Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 64, 65. 


it was realized that some plan must be devised by which the 
contributions of the people of the whole country could be 
directed into proper channels and made to do the greatest 
possible amount of good. Thus one of the sub-committees 
of the advisory branch of the Commission was instructed 
*^to agree upon a plan of common action in respect of sup- 
plies, depots, and methods of feeding the extra demands of 
the Medical Bureau or Commissariat Another sub- 
committee was to secure the necessary funds through 
solicitation of donations, either from State treasuries or 
private beneficence. ' ' In spite of the fact that relief work 
occupied a comparatively small part in the original plans 
for the Commission, the great good accomplished in direct- 
ing the organization of aid societies and in distributing 
contributions from the people at large soon caused it to be- 
come the main agency through which such contributions 
were directed, and it became a popular error that it was 
only a relief association upon a grand scale''. The Com- 
mission never departed, however, from its true scientific 
conception of rendering preventive service, always consid- 
ering the relief work as secondary in importance.^^ 


Created by an order of a government official and working 
only for the good of the Nation, the United States Sanitary 
Commission received and asked for no help from govern- 
ment funds. All it asked *^was permission to work''.^^^ It 
was necessary for the Commission to secure the support of 
the public and this object was soon accomplished. The first 
appeals were made to life insurance companies and brought 
a generous response. Soon donations were secured from all 

18 Documents of the U. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. I, No. 3, p. 4. 

19 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 68. 

20 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 80. 


over the United States.^^ A committee of influential busi- 
ness men handled the finances for the first year. During 
the early history of the Commission numerous appeals were 
issued for funds and barely enough money was received to 
meet demands. In 1862 it appeared that the undertaking 
would have to be abandoned for lack of funds — in fact a 
motion to that end was actually considered by the members 
of the Commission, but by a unanimous vote they decided to 
continue the struggle as long as possible.^^ 

These financial difficulties came at about the time when 
the war was beginning in dead earnest and when the fact 
that there was great suffering among the soldiers was be- 
coming known at home. A new interest then sprang up 
and the cash receipts of the Commission began to increase. 
In September over $200,000 was received from the people 
of the western coast. This was a new source of revenue 
and furnished an example which stimulated an increase in 
the returns from other sections of the country. In reality 
this timely aid marked the turning point and practically 
ended the financial infancy of the Commission.*' In De- 
cember, 1863, the funds again became somewhat low and 
resulted in the last public appeal which it was necessary to 
make. The characteristic feature of all the appeals was the 
fact that no attempt was made to arouse the emotions of 
the people and work upon their sympathies, but instead the 
emphasis was placed entirely upon the real economic value 
of the constructive work accomplished.^^ 

One of the greatest sources from which funds poured into 
the treasury of the Commission was the sanitary fairs held 
throughout the country. The first of these fairs was held at 
Chicago in November, 1863, and the sum of $79,000 was 

21 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 84. 

22 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, Chapter XVIII. 

23 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, Chapter XVIII. 



raised. Thereafter fairs were held in many cities and large 
amounts of money and supplies were obtained. Through 
this means Boston raised $153,000; Cincinnati, $263,000; 
Albany, $80,000; Brooklyn, $425,000; New York, $1,100,000; 
Philadelphia, $1,200,000; Cleveland, $60,000; Buffalo, $40,- 
000; and Honolulu $5,500.^* The proceeds from the fairs 
were in many instances used directly by the local organiza- 
tions conducting them, as was the case in Chicago, but in 
other cases a part of the proceeds was turned over to the 
central treasury of the Commission. The first money from 
fairs came to the central treasury in January, 1864, when 
$50,000 was received from Boston. Thereafter other 
amounts were received until the total receipts of the central 
treasury from this source reached $2,736,868.2^ 


A brief summary of the work of the Commission will be 
sufficient to show what it accomplished in relieving and pre- 
venting disease, in caring for the sick and wounded, and in 
collecting and distributing supplies — all of which services 
played an important part in increasing and maintaining the 
general efficiency of the army. Preventive measures which, 
as has been seen, were the primary aim of the Commission, 
were the first to be undertaken. Army camps and military 
hospitals were inspected and recommendations were made 
for their improvement. At first, members of the Commis- 
sion undertook to make inspections themselves, but in order 
to keep a more careful watch over conditions in all the 
camps and hospitals it was soon necessary to secure addi- 

2* Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, November 26, 1864; File's Social and In- 
dustrial Conditions in the North During the Civil War, p. 282, 

25 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, Chapter XVIII. 
It was stated by oflacers of the United States Sanitary Commission that the 
fairs actually resulted in loss rather than gain. Instead of guaranteeing the 
future of the Commission they tended, in the end, to lessen the income. 


tional inspectors. Plans proposed by the Commission for 
better sanitary conditions were at first largely disregarded, 
but were gradually accorded greater and greater recogni- 
tion until finally many of them were put into operation with 
gratifying success. Its plans for new hospitals were ac- 
cepted by the government officials without change, and addi- 
tional hospitals were constructed upon their recommenda- 
tions. As a result of its insistence the medical department 
of the army was completely reorganized and put upon a 
much more practical and efficient basis.^^ 

Physicians, at work on the battlefields and in the hospi- 
tals, early met with many diseases which were new to them 
and which, because of the lack of proper information, they 
were handicapped in treating. When this situation came 
to the attention of the Commission, it secured specialists in 
various lines to prepare medical and surgical monographs 
covering particular branches, and these monographs were 
furnished to the physicians and surgeons in the service of 
the army for their instruction. The good accomplished by 
the preventive work of the Commission can not be meas- 
ured, but it is at least certain that it was an important fac- 
tor in determining the final outcome of the war.^^ 


The relief work carried on by the Commission is of the 
greatest interest, since it was with this phase of the work 
that Iowa was connected. When the Commission first be- 
gan operations there was a feeling that the assumption on 
its part of any of the burdens of relief work would tend to 
weaken the responsibility of the government in that work. 
But when it soon became evident that many of the needs of 
the soldiers would not be supplied without assistance from 

20 Stille's TliHtory of the United States Sanitary Commission, Chapters IV, V. 
27 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, Chapter V. 



the Commission, that organization did not hesitate to enter 
upon the task of gathering and distributing stores and 
supplies of all kinds. So strong was the desire of the peo- 
ple to aid the soldiers that this desire was sure to find ex- 
pression in many and valuable donations ; and realizing this 
fact, the Commission undertook to direct and control the 
nature of the supplies and their distribution. 


The perfection of a system for collecting and controlling 
public contributions was at once begun. Depots to which 
supplies could be sent and from which they could be for- 
warded to the places of need were established in Boston, 
New York, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Chicago, 
and Louisville, and came to be known as branches of the 
United States Sanitary Commission. Men in various sec- 
tions of the country were appointed as associate members 
of the Commission, their duties being *Ho promote the 
establishment of auxiliary associations and so to direct the 
labors of those already formed, for the aid and relief of the 
army, that they might strengthen and support those of the 
Commission.'' The associate members also took charge of 
the supply depots and managed them on behalf of the Com- 

The burden of raising supplies fell largely upon the wom- 
en. They were urged to form societies in every neighbor- 
hood, to solicit donations, and to hold weekly meetings for 
the purpose of preparing articles for the use of the men in 

28 Still4's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 167, 174, 
175, 176. 

2QThe Sanitary Commission Bulletin, Vol. I, No. 1, 1863, p. 2; Stille's His- 
tory of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 180. Associate members of 
the United States Sanitary Commission in Iowa, as listed in the Documents of 
the U. S. Sanitary Commission, Vol. II, No. 74, pp. 1-22, were Dr. Charles 
Clark, Robert L. Collier, and John B. Elbert. 


service. As a result, during the war more than seven thou- 
sand local Aid Societies were organized, composed solely of 
women who devoted much of their time and energy to work 
for the cause of the Commission, and who were responsible, 
in a large measure, for the success of the whole movement. 
Many Aid Societies had been organized before the Commis- 
sion began its campaign and although the majority of them 
were eventually included in the national organization, this 
consolidation did not come about without a certain amount 
of strife. 

Each community felt, at first, that its duty was to care 
for its own soldiers. To send supplies by friends and towns- 
men *^who should see these comforts put upon the very 
backs, or into the very mouths, they were designed for, was 
the most natural plan in the world Nothing had been 
more difficult, at first, than to divert the warm impulses of 
the hearts of the women from efforts to minister to the 
necessities of those, who, going from their own households, 
seemed to have peculiar and special claims upon their sym- 
pathy.'* Many of the States undertook to care for their 
own troops, no matter where they might be and as ^ * South 
Carolina said she could take better care of her own com- 
merce and her own forensic interests than the United 
States government, so Iowa and Missouri and Connecticut 
and Ohio insisted that they could each take better care of 
their own soldiers, after they were merged in the general 
Union army, than could any central or federal or United 

States commission, whatever its resources or its organiza- 
tion. '^^i 

aoStille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 169, 172, 
180, 186, 189, 190; Eeed's The Heroic Story of the United States Sanitary 
Commission, 1861-1865, p. 11. 

31 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Eeview, 
Vol. XCVIII, pp. 181, 183. 



The position taken by the Commission was that since all 
the men were fighting for a single purpose and represented, 
not single States, but the entire Union, they should all be 
accorded the same treatment regardless of the State from 
which they might have enlisted. This stand by the Com- 
mission and the great difficulties that faced those States 
which tried to care for their own troops after they once be- 
came widely scattered, served to hasten the abandonment of 
independent State action.^^ By January, 1864, Missouri 
was the only State which had failed to unite and cooperate 
with the United States Sanitary Commission.^^ 

When the Aid Societies had been organized and put into 
operation contributions began to pour into the headquarters 
in large amounts. To stimulate and maintain interest 
among the Aid Societies, the Commission established a sys- 
tem of canvassing by agents, who frequently visited the 
local societies, presenting to them the needs of the army 
and keeping their enthusiasm aroused by descriptions of 
the Commission's work and its gratifying results. Bulletins 
and letters were regularly issued and served to keep all 
parts of the organization in close touch and fully informed 
of the progress being made. As the war progressed it was 
rather expected that the women's interest in the movement 
would gradually decline, but time proved that such was not 
the case. Instead of decreasing, the number of Aid Soci- 
eties and the amount of supplies which they forwarded in- 
creased and large quantities of stores continued to pour in 

32 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 189, 190. 

33 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Beview, 
Vol. XCVIII, pp. 183, 184. The reason whj the people of Missouri did not co- 
operate with the United States Sanitary Commission was because the head- 
quarters of the Western Sanitary Commission were at St. Louis, and this Com- 
mission had charge of all the work in the State. That the people of Missouri 
did their share in relief work will be seen in the account of the Western Sani- 
tary Commission in the following section. 


luitil the close of the war. It is estimated that three-fourths 
of the total supplies received by the Commission were col- 
lected by the women in this manner.^^ 


Belief as administered by the Commission was of two 
types — general relief and special relief. General relief had 
to do with the work in the hospitals, in the camps, on 
marches, or upon the battlefield, and was administered ac- 
cording to definite rules, which were always closely fol- 
lowed. All work was carried on through the army surgeons 
or other officers, nothing being undertaken without their 
knowledge and consent. This course, it was realized, was 
necessary in order to maintain the proper army discipline. 
Before any supplies were issued the Commission made sure 
that a real need existed for them, and even then a written 
statement or voucher was required of the surgeon applying 
for assistance. All the general, field, and regimental hospi- 
tals were supplied with visitors representing the Commis- 
sion, who had access to supplies and sanitary stores. When 
there was need for their assistance, which was almost con- 
stantly, they did all in their power to furnish both the things 
needed and the necessary personal service.^® 

To each army sent on distant expeditions, and usually to 
each column of the main armies, was assigned an inspector, 
who was always a medical man, and a staff of assistants 
called relief agents. Connected with each of these units 
was a depot of supplies, and wagons or boats were provided 
to transport such stores as might be required on the 
marches. A moderate compensation was paid to these and 

34 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 187, 188. 

35 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 244, 246, 



other agents of the Commission.^^ There were many who 
opposed the policy of paid agents, believing that voluntary 
service should be used exclusively, but the Commission soon 
learned that the work which agents were forced to under- 
take was a ^^hard, continuous and prosaic one'', which de- 
manded patience and, above all, permanent service. Ex- 
periments showed that volunteer helpers did not meet these 
requirements, and since the aim of the Commission was to 
secure the best possible service, they decided to pay their 
agents and thus increase the probability that they would 
remain in the work. Moreover, with paid agents it was 
possible to maintain a discipline that could not be hoped 
for with volunteers.^^ 

As has already been noted, supplies were forwarded by 
the local Aid Societies to a sub-depot in one of the larger 
cities. Here the stores were sorted and repacked, and held 
subject to the requisitions of the persons in charge of the 
two central depots at Washington and Louisville, where the 
reserve stores were held until needed. From these central 
depots the inspectors in the field secured the necessary sup- 
plies; and whenever they needed anything it was immedi- 
ately forwarded to them. In cases of a demand for articles 
not on hand, they were purchased or special appeals to the 
people were issued. For example, when scurvy began to 
invade the armies, appeals known as Onion Circulars" 
and Potato Circulars" were sent out, and in response 
thousands of barrels of onions and potatoes were secured 
from the farmers of the Northwest and quickly dispatched 
to the places of need. A military officer of high rank de- 

36 The Eeport of the United States Sanitary Commission for 1864-1865, p. 
807, states that the Commission employed two hundred agents at an average of 
two dollars per day or a total of $12,000 per month. 

3'7Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 250, 251, 
258, 259. 

VOL. XVI — 12 


clared that the Sanitary Commission, by this means, had 
saved the army engaged in the siege of Vicksburg.^^ 

One of the most interesting departments of general relief 
was that known as Battle Field Relief. Immediately after 
a battle the agents of the Commission rushed supplies to 
the field and all that was possible was done to relieve the 
wants and sufferings of th^ soldiers. Special groups of 
men, known as the Relief Corps, were trained for this task, 
which proved to be difficult. An account of the Commis- 
sion's activities after the battle of Gettysburg shows the 
nature of battlefield relief. Within two weeks after the 
battle, according to an estimate of Mr. Bellows, the sum of 
$75,000 was devoted to relief work at that particular place. 
Much of this money went to purchase supplies which were 
hurried to the army by express-cars and independent wagon 
trains. Sixty tons of fresh vegetables were carried forward 
in refrigerating cars, and vast amounts of clothing, food, 
fruits, and many other things which would promote the wel- 
fare and comfort of the sick and wounded were distrib- 

Included in the items of food and delicacies distributed 
were 11,000 pounds of fresh poultry and mutton, 6430 
pounds of fresh butter, 8500 dozen eggs, 675 bushels of 
fresh garden vegetables, 48 bushels of fresh berries, 12,900 
loaves of bread, 20,000 pounds of ice, 3800 pounds of con- 
centrated beef soup, 12,500 pounds of concentrated milk, 
7000 pounds of prepared farinaceous foods, 3500 pounds of 
dried fruits, 2000 jars of jellies and conserves, 750 gallons 
of tamarinds, 116 boxes of lemons, 46 boxes of oranges, 850 

88 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 191, 249, 

39 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 260, 261, 
262; The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Eeview, 
Vol. XCVIII, pp. 403, 404. 



pounds of coffee, 831 pounds of chocolate, 426 pounds of 
tea, 6800 pounds of white sugar, 785 bottles of syrup, 1250 
bottles of brandy, 1168 bottles of whiskey, 1148 bottles of 
wine, 600 gallons of ale, 134 barrels of crackers, 500 pounds 
of preserved meats, 3600 pounds of preserved fish, 400 gal- 
lons of pickles, 42 jars of catsup, 24 bottles of vinegar, 43 
jars of Jamaica ginger, 100 pounds of tobacco, 1000 tobacco 
pipes, 1621 pounds of codfish, 582 cans of canned fruit, 72 
cans of oysters, and 302 jars of brandied peaches. In the 
list of clothing and hospital supplies were 7143 drawers, 
10,424 shirts, 2144 pillows, 264 pillow cases, 1630 bed sacks, 
1007 blankets, 275 sheets, 508 wrappers, 2659 handkerchiefs, 
5818 pairs of stockings, 728 bed pans, 10,000 towels and 
napkins, 2300 sponges, 1500 combs, 200 buckets, 250 pounds 
of castile soap, 300 yards of oiled silk, 7000 tin basins and 
cups, 110 barrels of oil linen, 7 water tanks, 46 water coolers, 
225 bottles of bay rum and cologne, 3500 fans, 11 barrels of 
chloride of lime, 4000 pairs of shoes and slippers, 1200 pairs 
of crutches, 180 lanterns, 350 candles, 300 square yards of 
canvas, 648 pieces of netting, 237 quires of paper, 189 pieces 
of clothing, and 16 rolls of plaster.^^ 

Even greater was the battlefield relief administered after 
the Battle of the Wilderness in Virginia in 1864. At that 
time two steam barges and four hundred and forty wagons 
carried to the field over two hundred tons of stores, which 
were distributed by two hundred of the Commission's 

The following description of the general relief work, as 
given by Stille, shows the remarkable possibilities of the 
Commission's organization: 

40 Fite 's Social and Industrial Conditions in the North During the Civil War, 
pp. 277, 278. 

41 Fite 's Social and Industrial Conditions in the North During the Civil War, 
p. 278. 


Whether the wants of the Army of the Potomac were confined to 
suitable Hospital clothing and Hospital diet, whether General 
Bosecrans' army before Chattanooga, or that of General Grant be- 
fore Vicksburg was wasting away from the terrible effects of scurvy, 
whether General Gilmore 's army on Morris Island was perishing of 
disease aggravated by the use of brackish water, or that of General 
Weitzel in Texas was suffering from a total deprivation of veg- 
etable food, the stores of the Commission were always found abun- 
dant for supplying the particular necessity, and were conveyed to 
the sufferers with a promptness and with an abundance, which 
never failed speedily to restore their shattered strength. It seemed 
indeed just as easy with the means at the disposal of the Commis- 
sion, and with the thorough organization of its system to forward 
cargoes of ice and anti-scorbutics to South Carolina or Texas, or to 
transport thousands of barrels of onions and potatoes from the dis- 
tant Northwest to the Armies of General Rosecrans or General 
Grant, as to send a few cases of shirts and drawers, and of Hospital 
delicacies from Washington to the Army of the Potomac.^ ^ 


The other type of relief — that is, special relief — was 
provided for ^Hhe care of sick and needy soldiers in the 
vicinity of military depots, discharged men, paroled prison- 
ers, and that vast class of sufferers known as soldiers in 
'irregular circumstances' or, in other words, those that had 
no legal claim upon the ordinary provisions of the govern- 
ment for assistance." Homes for the men formed one of 
the greatest items in this branch of the work. Here care 
was given to soldiers who were not sick enough for the 
hospitals and who were not well enough to return to service, 
and to those who needed aid in many other ways. Forty 
such homes, from Washington to Brownsville, Texas, were 
maintained by the Commission, in which over four and a 
half million meals were served, and a million lodgings given 
to deserving soldiers.^^ 

42 Still^'s History of the United States Sanitary Commission, p. 252. 
43Stille's nistory of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 244, 294, 


Another kind of special relief took the form of feeding 
stations conducted for the benefit of soldiers going from 
the battlefields to the hospitals. Owing to the great num- 
ber of wounded men and the difficulties of travel, much suf- 
fering often resulted, and in order to furnish relief as far 
as possible these stations were maintained along the routes 
of travel. Convalescent camps, where men might recuper- 
ate their strength after leaving the hospitals and before 
returning to service, were also established, more than two 
hundred thousand men passing through a single one of 
these camps in 1863 and 1864.^^ 

Under a special bureau there was conducted a hospital 
directory, with headquarters at Washington and branch of- 
fices at Philadelphia, Louisville, and New York, by means 
of which there was kept a complete record of the names of 
men in hospitals. In these four offices were contained the 
names of over six hundred thousand men, with the latest 
procurable information in regard to the position and condi- 
tion of each man, which furnished an invaluable service in 
keeping the people informed of the whereabouts and condi- 
tion of relatives and friends. Through a Pension Bureau 
and War Claim Agency the sum of over two and a half mil- 
lion dollars was secured for soldiers by examining and per- 
fecting the papers which represented their claims upon the 
government.*^ The branches of this agency in Iowa were at 
Dubuque, Davenport, Des Moines, and Burlington.^ ^ This 
department continued to operate for some time after the 
war and helped to collect back pay and pension money due 
to the soldiers.^^ 

Other forms of special relief consisted of providing 

4*Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 298-303. 

45 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 307-314. 

46 The Sanitary Commission Bulletin, No. 40, 1865, pp. 1277, 1278. 

47 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 310-314. 


homes at the military centers where the wives and mothers 
of sick and wounded soldiers could be cared for while visit- 
ing their kin. Detectives were also employed to protect 
soldiers from sharpers ; and couriers were provided on the 
trains to minister to traveling soldiers who might be in need 
of, or could be aided by, their services.^^ The many phases 
of the relief work show upon what a large scale the Com- 
mission was operating, and what a wide field of activities 
it embraced. As expressed by a writer in an English peri- 
odical, the principle upon which the Commission proceeded 
seems to have been never to find a want of any kind with- 
out striving to supply it."^^ 


The total value of the supplies collected and distributed 
by the Commission was estimated to be $15,000,000. The 
cash receipts were $4,962,014. These totals, it must be re- 
membered, were for the goods and money actually handled 
by the central body. In addition each local Aid Society 
raised money for local work which never passed through 
the hands of the Commission. After an unsuccessful at- 
tempt to obtain a statement from all the local societies con- 
cerning their work, the Commission estimated their aggre- 
gate contributions to be more than half of that of the Com- 
mission and its branches. Many of the railroads, telegraph, 
and express companies gave their services free of charge or 
at greatly reduced rates. At least three-fourths of the cost 
of transportation of all supplies was given free of charge. 
The newspapers printed advertisements for the Commis- 
sion without charge, and many stores and companies from 
which goods were purchased lowered their prices so as to 

48 Stille's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 314, 315. 
49Cobbe's The American Sanitary Commission and Its Lesson in Fraser's 
Magazine, Vol. LXXV, p. 405. 


barely cover the cost to themselves. All these services were 
of great money value, and an estimate of all of the services 
of the Commission, which includes the supplies, the cash, 
and other items, places the total at not less than $25,000,- 
000.^^ The efficiency with which this vast supply of stores 
was handled is suggested by the report of the western de- 
partment for the two years ending September 1, 1863, dur- 
ing which time this department distributed stores of an 
estimated value of $2,250,000, at an expense of $35,000, or 
one and one-half per cent of their valuation.^^ 


The great success of the United States Sanitary Commis- 
sion has been attributed to the genuineness with which it 
carried out its pledge to act strictly as a subordinate and 
auxiliary body to the medical staff. It was always ^4oyal 
to the Medical Department, — its fearless critic, but never 
its rival or supplanter, — its watchful spur, but never its 
sly traducer or its disguised enemy." After the Commis- 
sion had been in operation for some time, the officers of the 
Medical Bureau realized that it was possible for it really 
to aid and not embarrass them'' and they entered with 
hearty cooperation into the work. The relief work under- 
taken by the Commission is also generally considered to 
have been a great factor in its success, and historians have 
questioned whether it would ever have succeeded without 
it. The material aid rendered appealed to the public; it 
aroused popular interest and brought funds into the treas- 
ury which could be used for preventive service.^^ 

50 Stille 's History of the United States Sanitary Commission, pp. 487-490. 

51 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Beview, 
Vol. XCVIII, p. 407. 

52 The United States Sanitary Commission in The North American Beview, 
Vol. XCVIII, p. 194; Cobbe's The American Sanitary Commission and Its Les- 
son in Eraser's Magazine, Vol. LXXV, p. 409; Stille 's History of the United 
States Sanitary Commission, pp. 185, 255. 


When the Commission was organized its members *^had 
nobody to help them and everybody to thwart them. Be- 
fore they had done, they had imitators without number, 
eager to do their work, and glad to take their name/'^^ 
An English writer speaks of the United States Sanitary 
Commission as worthy of the closer study of English 
philanthropists'' and affirms that ^*the Sanitary Commis- 
sion effected a greater amount of good than had ever before 
been done in time of war".^^ 




About four months after the opening of the war Vincent 
Colyer of New York conceived the idea ^^of bringing reli- 
gious influences to bear ' ' upon the men serving in the army. 
The general public, however, was slow to fall in line with 
his suggestion, and it was not until November 16, 1861, that 
representatives of Young Men's Christian Associations met 
in New York and established the United States Christian 
Commission,^^ the purpose of which was ^^to promote the 
spiritual and temporal welfare of the officers and men of 
the United States army and navy".^^ 

The men named to serve upon the Commission were Eev. 
RoUin H. Neale of Boston, George H. Stuart of Phila- 
delphia, Charles Demond of Boston, John P. Crozer of 

53 The United States Sanitary Commission in The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 
XIX, p. 418. 

64Cobbe's The American Sanitary Commission and Its Lessons in Fraser's 
Magazine, Vol. LXXV, pp. 401, 405. 

55 Mr. Moss's Christian Commission" in The Nation, Vol. VI, pp. 214, 215. 
50 First Annual Report of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, p. 5. 



PMladelphia, Bishop E, S. Janes of New York, Rev. M. L. 
R. P. Thompson of Cincinnati, Hon. Benjamin F. Mannierre 
of New York, Col. Clinton B. Fisk of St. Louis, Rev. Benja- 
min C. Cutler of Brooklyn, John V. Farwell of Chicago, 
Mitchell H. Miller of Washington, and John D. Hill of Buf- 
falo. Immediately after their appointment these men met 
in Washington and perfected an organization by electing 
George H. Stuart as chairman, B. F. Mannierre as secretary 
and treasurer, and George H. Stuart, Bishop E. S. Janes, 
Rev. Benjamin C. Cutler, Charles Demond, and Benjamin 
F. Mannierre as an executive committee. Headquarters 
were established in New York and work was immediately 

Considerable time elapsed, however, before anything of 
importance was accomplished. ^^For a good many months 
— seven or eight — the work languished, and at times it 
seemed as if it would never be even well begun. ' ' In July, 
1862, Mr. Morrison, the secretary in charge of the head- 
quarters, wrote ^'that the property on hand consists of a 
mahogany table with two drawers, two oak chairs, some 
books and stationery in a desk — the desk apparently a 
borrowed one — a lot of pamphlets, miscellaneous books, 

57 Later the offices of secretary and treasurer were separated, Rev. A. M. 
Morrison becoming secretary. During the first year B. F. Mannierre and Eev. 
B. C. Cutler resigned from the Commission and Jay Cooke of Philadelphia and 
Eev. James Eells of Brooklyn were named to succeed them. J. P. Crozer and 
Jay Cooke filled the vacancies on the executive committee; Joseph Patterson of 
Philadelphia assumed the duties of treasurer. After several months of gratu- 
itous service, Rev. A. M. Morrison resigned as secretary, and was followed in 
that office by Rev. W. E. Boardman. At this time the headquarters were 
moved from New York to Philadelphia. — First Annual Beport of the United 
States Christian Commission, 1863, pp. 5, 6. 

During the third year of the Commission's activities its membership was in- 
creased from twelve to forty-eight; the executive committee from five to four- 
teen; and two secretaryships were established, one for home organization, the 
other for field organization. — Third Annual Beport of the United States 
Christian Commission, 1865, p. 15. 


newspapers, and magazines ; a coal scuttle, coal-scoop, ham- 
mer, box-opener, and marking-pot; some paper, nails, and 
twine ; eighty-four three-cent stamps and fifty blue ones in 
a buff envelope, and a less number of the same value in a 
box of pens in the back part of a drawer. The only thing, 
in fact, to which Mr. Morrison was able to look back with 
pleasure when he afterwards reflected on his administration 
was that, daily, there was held in his office a pretty united, 
earnest prayer-meeting of one.^' Like the founders of the 
United States Sanitary Commission, the members of the 
Christian Commission met many rebukes from government 
officials, and it was some time before they could secure any 
cooperation from them.^^ 

Early in 1863, the affairs of the Commission began to 
develop more favorably. Eebuffs from those in authority 
became less frequent and eventually *Hhe approbation and 
commendation'' of the President of the United States and 
of the higher army officials were secured. The first report 
issued by the Commission, in February, 1863, stated that 
^Hhe United States Christian Commission, under full sanc- 
tion of the President, the Secretaries of War and of the 
Navy, the Generals commanding the armies of the Union, 
and the Admirals commanding its squadrons, is prepared to 
minister, by its own volunteer, unpaid delegates, — Chris- 
tian gentlemen of the highest respectability, — to the wants, 
religious and temporal, of every man, on land and on sea, 
wearing the national uniform. Already, the report 
stated, 356 delegates had been sent to work among the sol- 
diers and to preach the gospel; 3691 boxes of stores and 
publications, valued at $142,150, had been distributed; aid 

Mr. Moss's Christian Commission" in The Nation, Vol. VI, pp. 214, 
215; Moss's The Christian Commission in The Nation, Vol. VI, p. 272. 

f'O First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, pp. 
5, 117. 



had been given to many thousand sick and wounded sol- 
diers; and many letters had been written and sent for the 
soldiers to their families and friends.^^ 

The aim of the originators and founders of the Christian 
Commission was to exert a spiritual influence upon the men 
in the national service. But just as the United States Sani- 
tary Commission had found it essential to undertake the 
collection and distribution of supplies, so the Christian 
Commission found it necessary to minister, not only to the 
spiritual needs, but likewise to the physical needs of the men 
whom they wished to serve. Thus in February, 1863, the 
Commission announced that its purpose was ^'to arouse the 
Christian Associations and the Christian men and women 
of the loyal States to such action towards the men in our 
army and navy, as would be pleasing to the Master ; to ob- 
tain and direct volunteer labors, and to collect stores and 
money with which to supply whatever was needed, reading 
matter, and articles necessary for health not furnished by 
Government or other agencies, and to give the officers and 
men of our army and navy the best Christian ministries for 
both body and soul possible in their circumstances."^^ The 
Commission did not propose to supersede the regular chap- 
lain system as it then existed in the army and navy, but 
hoped to cooperate with and aid it.^^ Eight principles, in- 
cluding catholicity, nationality, voluntary service, combina- 
tion of benefits for body and soul, reliance upon unpaid 
delegates, personal distribution with personal ministra- 
tions, respect for authorities, and cooperation, were adopted 
as rules to guide the Commission in its undertakings.^^ 

60 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, pp. 
13, 14. 

61 First Annual Report of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, p. 6. 

62 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, p. 5. 
Second Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1864, 

pp. 15-21. 



The work of the Commission was divided into two general 
divisions, one including the work carried on at the seat of 
war and the other the work conducted at home or away 
from the seat of war. The latter department was under the 
direction of the Young Men's Christian Associations in 
places where such organizations were to be found and were 
willing to assume the duty; otherwise army committees 
were formed to do the work. The Commission and the 
many delegates representing it performed the services at 
the seat of war. The Young Men's Christian Associations 
and the army committees distributed religious matter and 
necessary supplies, and relieved and counselled the sick and 
wounded in the hospitals and camps, besides collecting 
stores to be forwarded to the men working near the battle 
lines. The work of supplying religious services, distrib- 
uting reading matter, religious and otherwise, administer- 
ing bodily comforts, and promoting intercourse between the 
soldiers and their families was known as General Work". 
The relief and care of the wounded during and after battles, 
the relief given in parole and convalescent camps, and other 
emergency relief was designated as ^'Special Work".^^ 

Supplies, upon being collected, were forwarded to head- 
quarters of the Commission established near the field of 
action, whence they were apportioned to delegates for per- 
sonal distribution among the soldiers. For work upon the 
battlefields, a trunk was furnished to each company of 
three, five, or six delegates, according as conditions de- 
manded, packed with articles for the immediate use of men 
suffering upon the field. These trunks were taken by the 
delegates as personal baggage, to insure their being on 
hand upon the delegates' arrival. In cases of emergency 

64 First Annual Ecport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, 
p. 11. 


whole car-loads of special stores were bought and gathered 
together in a very limited time, and sent by express trains 
to the field of battle. When the Commission's agents were 
forewarned of a battle an effort was made to have stores 
sent in advance so that they might be on hand the instant 
they were needed.^^ 

Just as many gratuitous services were granted to the 
Sanitary Commission by railroads, telegraph companies, 
and similar agencies, so the Christian Commission was 
given free transportation for their goods and representa- 
tives by the railroads; free service was accorded by tele- 
graph companies ; and the best hotels in many cities opened 
their doors free of charge to the Commission's delegates.^^ 

The voluntary service of agents and delegates was a fea- 
ture of the Commission's policy which was continually em- 
phasized. With the exception of a few paid agents, all 
services were performed without compensation, thus form- 
ing a striking contrast to the Sanitary Commission which 
preferred paid rather than voluntary help. The men repre- 
senting the Christian Commission were ministers, mer- 
chants, lawyers, surgeons and others" who offered their 
services freely, in numbers ample to distribute all the stores 
and publications contributed, and all the Commission has 
had means to purchase. "^^ The men were chosen from all 
denominations so as to minister, without preference, to men 
of all creeds. Likewise no lines were drawn between the 

65 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, 
p. 12. 

66 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, pp. 
6, 7; Second Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1864, 
pp. 24, 25. 

67 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, 
pp. 6, 7. 

68 Second Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1864, 
pp. 15, 16. 


soldiers of different States or sections of the country. All 
men were treated alike, even the enemy wounded being aided 
in many cases.^^ The members of the Commission aimed to 
send their supplies and render their services where the 
need seemed to them to be greatest, and they guarded care- 
fully against flooding one department of the army with 
supplies to the neglect of another. 

Since all stores and publications distributed by the Com- 
mission were taken directly to the soldiers by delegates or 
those known by them to be worthy of all confidence'', the 
Commission was assured that all goods would reach their 
proper destination without being lost or misused. This 
system of personal distribution by voluntary agents and 
delegates, aided by the free transportation and communica- 
tion granted them, permitted the Commission to perform 
its many and valuable functions with but little outlay of 
money. '^^ 

A phase of relief work which is of special interest, since 
it was proposed by and carried out under the direction of 
Mrs. Wittenmyer, who played such an important part in 
the relief work of Iowa, was the establishment and opera- 
tion of diet kitchens. Special diet kitchens, separate from 
the general kitchens of the hospitals, were conducted for 
the benefit of *'low diet" patients. These were government 
kitchens and were controlled and supplied by the medical 
authorities of the hospitals, except that the Commission 
furnished certain necessities not furnished by the govern- 
ment and further provided and maintained women to man- 
age them."^^ All patients in the hospitals who were not in 

69 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, 
p. 13. 

70 Second Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1864, 
pp. 15, 16. 

71 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, p. 7. 

72 Third Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
p. 24. 



condition to go to the general table or eat the food prepared 
in the general kitchens, had their meals ordered by the 
surgeons from the special diet kitchens.'^^ First adopted 
early in 1864 for the western branch of the army, these diet 
kitchens proved so successful that in the following year 
they were extended to the armies in the east J* 


The Christian Commission proceeded in much the same 
way as the Sanitary Commission had done in its efforts to 
secure contributions of goods, money, and services. In one 
of its earliest appeals to the public the Commission wrote : 
**Let every city, town, and village form and report to us its 
Army Committee, to hold meetings, collect and forward 
money and supplies, and to select and recommend men to 
go as delegates.'' Although formed by representatives of 
Young Men's Christian Associations, the Commission em- 
phasized the point that it was unnecessary to belong to such 
associations in order to assist and help them in their work."^^ 

Little money was spent in the effort to interest the people 
in the activities of the Commission or to secure their aid 
and cooperation. In an early report of the Commission it 
is stated that the ^'Christian men who have gone without 
pay as delegates to relieve, supply, and instruct the soldier, 
in hospital and camp, have just as freely told the story of 
their work, and of the soldier's necessities, which has served 
to interest the people, and secure their prayers, money, and 
stores better than any paid agency could possibly have 

73 Third Annual Eeport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
p. 44. 

74 Third Anwual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, p. 
24; Fourth Annual Eeport of the United States Christian Commission, 1866, 
p. 16. 

75 First Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, pp. 
122, 123. 


done''.'^^ The second annual report again emphasized this 
system of raising supplies, and the remark was made that 
^ ^ there never was such another agency to move the people. ' ' 
The report added, however, that in ^Hwo or three instances 
indeed, returned delegates, under the pressure of constant 
and earnest demand for them to address public meetings, 
had been retained ' \ but their compensation was only * ^ nec- 
essary sustenance", and this was provided for largely by 
special contributions. Without any urging, many com- 
munities had organized committees which acted as local 
Christian Commissions, while the people had ^ ' sent in their 
money and stores to these various centers of supply, which 
in turn have poured in their streams into the general work 
of the Commission." Twice, on Thanksgiving days, large 
contributions had been made for the Commission, the second 
contribution alone amounting to nearly ninety thousand 
dollars. Not only did the Commission choose to perform its 
work without special agents for raising funds, but it aimed 
to employ '^no outside means, or indirect appliances, com- 
bining personal pleasure with public beneficence, to draw 
money which would not be given directly' a policy which 
again was almost directly opposite to that pursued by the 
United States Sanitary Commission and its branches and 
local societies. 

These policies in regard to raising money and supplies 
operated satisfactorily for the Christian Commission until 
the third year of its work, when new difficulties were en- 
countered. The interest of the general public was centered 
in the sanitary fairs which were being held throughout the 
country, and the people ^'appeared to be pressed into for- 
getfulness of the Christian Commission and its wants." 

76 First Annual Report of the United States Christian Commission, 1863, p. 7. 

77 Second Annual Report of the United States Christian Commission, 1864, 
pp. 22, 23. 


Some step to overcome this lack of interest had to be taken. 
Two plans were suggested and both were accepted. An 
eastern clergyman proposed that in each evangelical con- 
gregation there should be formed an auxiliary of the Com- 
mission, including, so far as possible, ' ^ every man, woman, 
and child as contributing members''. To this was added 
the idea of uniting the women of the land more firmly with 
the Commission. The result was a scheme to organize 
Ladies ' Christian Commissions — one in every evangelical 
congregation — embracing all sexes and all ages, with a 
membership fee of one dollar a year, to solicit contributions 
in money and stores and to prepare clothing and delicacies 
for distribution in the field. A second plan, to take a na- 
tional subscription on behalf of the Commission, was sug- 
gested by a western merchant who gave $5000 to inaugurate 
the movement. As a result of this suggestion a meeting 
was held in Philadelphia at which $50,000 was raised; 
$30,000 was pledged at Pittsburgh, and in many other cities 
large sums were subscribed.'^* 

The good accomplished by the Ladies ' Christian Commis- 
sions was emphasized in the final report of the Commission. 
Although they were late in being organized and had only a 
short time to operate before the war closed, a great deal 
was accomplished by them. The reports to the central 
Commission were very incomplete, only two hundred and 
sixty-six local organizations reporting, of which eighty were 
in Philadelphia, with the remainder scattered over seven- 
teen States. Nearly $200,000 was received by the Christian 
Commission from local agencies. 

78 Third Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
pp. 18, 19, 20. 

'79 Fourth Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1866, 
p. 202. 

VOL. XVI — 13 



An enumeration, somewhat detailed, of the services ren- 
dered by the Commission will help to indicate the exact 
nature of its activities. For the four years of the war 4859 
delegates were commissioned, giving an aggregate of 
181,562 days of service. These delegates distributed 95,066 
boxes of stores and publications, 1,466,748 Bibles, Testa- 
ments, and portions of the scriptures, 1,370,953 hymn and 
Psalm books, 8,308,052 knapsack books, 296,816 bound li- 
brary books, 767,861 magazines and pamphlets, 18,126,002 
religious newspapers, 39,104,243 pages of tracts, and 8572 

Silent Comforters''; they preached 58,308 sermons; held 
77,744 prayer-meetings; and wrote 92,321 letters for sick 
and disabled soldiers.^^ 

The cash receipts of the central and branch offices 
amounted to $2,524,512.56; stores distributed were esti- 
mated to be worth $2,839,445.17 ; the value of the books and 
literature of all kinds was placed at $299,576.26; the ser- 
vices of delegates were estimated to be worth $344,413.69; 
while the free accommodations granted by railroads, tele- 
graph companies, and similar agencies amounted to 
$283,160. The total value of the Commission's work, in- 
cluding cash, stores, and the many services rendered, 
amounted, according to the Commission's own estimate, to 
$6,291,107.68.^^ But the material wants supplied do not 
measure the full value of the Christian Commission's ef- 
forts, for there were deeper wants than those of the body 
— other comfort and help to be given besides the physical. 
The gospel of clean clothes, of food that was not ^hard-tack,' 
of encouraging words, was but the entering wedge of a 

80 Fourth Annual Report of the United States Christian Commission, 1866, 
p. 27. 

81 Fourth Annual Bcport of the United States Christian Commission, 1866, 
p. 28. 



higher message, whose proclamation was the Delegate's 
dearest privilege. ' 

There can be no doubt that from the work of the Chris- 
tian Commission great benefits were derived by individual 
soldiers and by the army as a whole. The nature of these 
benefits is well stated by a historian in setting forth Gen- 
eral Grant's reasons for permitting the Commission's dele- 
gates to work within the limits of his army, before they had 
received any sanction from government authorities. He 
granted this permission because of his realization *^that the 
distribution of newspapers and books among his fellow- 
citizens in arms ; the presence among them of men and wo- 
men who revived in their minds the best ideas connected 
with home; who supplied them with reading matter that 
called them away from euchre and bluff and corrupting 
conversation; who set them singing hymns and hearing 
sermons when they might otherwise have been breaking 
guard or smuggling whiskey into camp ; who nursed and fed 
men for whose death too often the hospital stewards were 
waiting with a natural but discouraging impatience; who 
wrote thousands of letters that brought back to sick men 
thousands of comforting letters ; who, in short, made able- 
bodied soldiers less disorderly and able-bodied and disabled 
soldiers more happy and comfortable — such persons, he 
perceived, were persons that might properly be used by the 
general of a volunteer army".^^ 




* Unlike the United States Sanitary Commission, the West- 
ern Sanitary Commission did not find its beginning in any 

j 82 The Christian Commission in Lippincott 's Magazine, Vol. I, p. 151. 
83 Mr. Moss's "Christian Commission" in The Nation, Vol. VI, p. 215. 



preconceived and prearranged plan of operation, but 
sprang from sudden exigency for relief of suffering''.^* 
After the battles of Boonville, Carthage, Dug Spring, and 
Wilson's Creek the sick and wounded soldiers were brought 
into St. Louis in great numbers and in the absence of any 
adequate existing accommodations, the city was confronted 
with the task of developing means by which the men could be 
cared f or.^^ The ^ ' House of Refuge ' \ a large, uncompleted 
structure some four miles from the city had been taken over 
as a hospital, but as neither stoves, nor bedsteads, nor 
beds, nor bedding, nor food, nor nurses, nor anything else'' 
had been provided, much remained to be done before the 
building was suitable for hospital purposes.^^ Even when 
this building had been properly equipped, the number of 
men demanding medical care had become so large that still 
additional hospitals were a necessity.®^ 

To aid in relieving this situation, early in September, 
1861, General Fremont appointed a commission of civilians 
to cooperate with the medical department in obtaining and 
furnishing buildings for hospital use.®^ The men named 
as members of the comission, which was designated as the 
Western Sanitary Commission, were James E. Yeatman, 
C. S. Greely, J. B. Johnson, George Partridge, and Rev. 
William G. Eliot, all of St. Louis. The first of these men 
was a retired Tennessee planter, Greely and Partridge were 

84 Loyal WorTc in Missouri in The North American Bevieiv, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 523. 

85 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 288; 
Loyal Worlc in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, p. 526. 

86 Loyal Worlc in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 526. 

87 Anderson 's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 288. 

88 Loyal Work in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, 
pp. 526, 527; Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, 
p. 288. 



prosperous merchants, Johnson a physician, and Eliot the 
pastor of the only Unitarian church in St. Louis.^^ Mr. 
Yeatman assumed the presidency of the body and devoted 
his entire time to the work, the remaining members meeting 
with him daily except Sunday for consultation.^^ The 
members, who served without pay,^^ decided at the first 
meeting that they would advance the small amount of money 
needed for office expenses and determined to proceed with- 
out the services of a clerk.^^ ^ little later it was found 
necessary to employ one man, who acted as storekeeper, 
porter and clerk for thirty dollars a month. 

With this meager beginning the Commission found itself 
called upon to perform additional functions, one after an- 
other, until ultimately the work, although not quite so broad 
nor so extensive, corresponded closely to that of the United 
States Sanitary Commission. It ^^not only sent surgeons, 
nurses, and supplies into the field, but strove by hospitals, 
! soldiers' homes, agents, and advisors, to succor the con- 
! valescent, aid the injured to return home, and to do, in 
short, for anyone, Union or Confederate, white or black, 
free or slave, any service of mercy which he needed. ' ' Be- 
ginning in St. Louis, the field covered by the Commission 
gradually spread to the surrounding territory and to neigh- 
boring States until soon practically *Hhe whole burden of 
; ministering to the Union (and in some cases to the Confed- 
j erate) armies in the Mississippi Valley fell upon the V^est- 

jj 89 War of the Bebellion: Official Becords, Series III, Vol. II, p. 947; Ander- 

son's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 290. 
! 90 Anderson 's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, pp. 289, 
j 290. 

j 91 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 290. 
I ^2 Loyal WorJc in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 523. 

93 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 291. 



ern Sanitary Commission/'^* A member of the Commis- 
sion writing in 1864 said that the organization **has had, 
with trifling exceptions, exclusive (sanitary) care of all the 
armies west of the Mississippi, from the beginning of the 
war. . . . For the first year of the war, the time of greatest 
difficulty, it had almost a monopoly in fitting up and sup- 
plying hospital steamers and all other Western river work, 
including supplies to the gunboat flotilla on the Mississippi, 
and has kept its agents and stores of hospital supplies at 
every important point in the Western department. 

The United States Sanitary Commission early recognized 
the existence of the western organization and at first at- 
tempted to absorb it as one of its branches. Dr. J. S. New- 
berry, the secretary of the Western Department of the Uni- 
ted States Commission, was instructed to confer with the 
Western Commission relative to a union of the two organi- 
zations. He met the members of the latter body on Septem- 
ber 23, 1861, and submitted to them his proposition, but 
after due deliberation they rejected it, choosing to remain 
independent.^^ About the first of November a remon- 
strance against the work of the Western Sanitary Commis- 
sion was filed at Washington by the United States Sanitary 
Commission, requesting the Secretary of War ^^to vindi- 
cate his own authority" by requiring General Fremont to 
rescind his order, and put the Western Sanitary Commis- 
sion in *^its proper place of subordination." Secretary 
Cameron ^^had no objection to the Western gentlemen being 

«4 Usher's A Bibliography of Sanitary World in St. Louis During the Civil 
War in the Missouri Historical Society Collections, Vol. IV, p. 73; Usher's 
The Western Sanitary Commission in the Proceedings of the Mississippi Val- 
ley Historical Association, 1908-1909, pp. 219, 220. 

95 Loyal Woric in Missouri in The North American Review, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 520. 

96 Newberry 's The U. S. Sanitary Commission in the Valley of the Missis- 
sippi, p. 18. 


as independent as they pleased, so long as they were under 
the Medical Department/' Accordingly he approved the 
order of General Fremont and gave to the Western Commis- 
sion the privilege of ' ^ extending its labors to the camps and 
hospitals of any of the Western armies, nnder the direction 
of the assistant surgeon-general, Col. E. C. Wood, or the 
senior medical officer of the Medical Department. The 
action of the United States Sanitary Commission was prob- 
ably taken under misapprehension of the real facts and 
in the later years of the war the two Commissions cooperat- 
ed on very friendly terms.^^ 


Although its work was, on the whole, similar to that of 
the United States Sanitary Commission, the workers for the 
Western Commission, because of their position, had their 
own particular problems to solve. The provision of hos- 
pitals, which was their first task, proved to be one of the 
greatest. Within two months after opening the first hos- 
pital, they had five more completely equipped and filled to 
overflowing. At the end of the war fifteen hospitals had 
been established in and around St. Louis with accommoda- 
tions for six thousand patients. Of these the largest, which 
in two years had received eleven thousand patients, was 
situated at Jefferson Barracks. In addition to these the 
Commission joined with the United States Sanitary Com- 
mission in founding and equipping ten hospitals in Mem- 
phis, Tennessee.^^ Floating Hospitals'' were operated on 

97 IFar of the ^Rebellion: Official Records, Series III, Vol. II, p. 947; Loyal 
Work in Missouri in The North American Eeview, Vol. XCVIII, p. 528. 

98 Loyal WorTc in Missouri in The North American Review, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 528. 

99 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, pp. 291, 
292, 297, 298. 


the Mississippi Eiver. These were boats, fitted out as hos- 
pitals, which cruised up and down the river so as to be close 
to the armies which they served. Thirteen such boats, each 
accommodating from five hundred to a thousand patients, 
were operated by the Commission. To give service on the 
immediate field of battle and upon marches, flying hos- 
pitals'' or wagons furnished with cots and medical stores 
were maintained.^ 

The first soldiers ' home to be established by the Western 
Commission was opened in March, 1862, at St. Louis, and 
during the war housed more than seventy thousand soldiers. 
Subsequently five additional homes were opened in which 
as a daily average six hundred guests, mostly invalids and 
convalescents, were cared for, fitted out with necessities, and 
sent on to their destinations. Up to December, 1865, the 
homes altogether had housed, free of charge, 421,616 sol- 
diers, had furnished them 982,592 meals and 410,252 lodg- 

jjjgg 101 

A new problem was faced by the Western Sanitary Com- 
mission in dealing with the freedmen and refugees from the 
southern States. These people became very numerous in 
St. Louis and the adjacent territory and were often in most 
urgent need of assistance. Many thousands of white refu- 
gees from the South gathered in Missouri, Arkansas, Ten- 
nessee, and Mississippi, and the Western Commission was 
the first of the sanitary organizations to undertake system- 
atically to provide for them. Ten centers were established 
where temporary hospitals and schools were opened and 
where all possible aid was given to these people. The 

100 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 297; 
Usher's The Western Sanitary Commission in the Proceedings of the Missis- 
sippi Valley Historical Association, 1908-1909, p. 223. 

101 Loyal Work in Missouri in The North American Review, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 520 ; Anderson 's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, pp. 292, 



Commission ^^fed, clothed, taught and nursed them, and, 
so far as practicable, put them to work.''^^^ The Commis- 
sion also sent food and clothing for temporary relief of the 
freedmen, aiid later founded hospitals for their care and 
opened schools to educate and prepare them for their new 


Not long after the establishment of the Western Sanitary 
Commission, notices asking for assistance in carrying on its 
work were inserted in the St. Louis newspapers. In addi- 
tion a few lines were sent for publication in the Boston 
Transcript J asking the New England women for donations 
of ^*knit woolen socks Such notices continued to be pub- 
lished thereafter about every six months, this being the 
only means used by the Commission to reach the people of 
the Nation and secure contributions. No regular system 
of raising and collecting money and stores was maintained. 
No local societies were organized as auxiliaries, and no 
agents were sent out by the Commission to work in its 
behalf.^ The Commission was, however, absolutely de- 
pendent upon public support for money and supplies, and 
although the movement which brought this support was 
^'spontaneous and self -directing", it resulted in a contin- 
ued, uninterrupted stream of gifts" which kept the Com- 
mission's warehouses full and its treasury replenished.^ 

102 Usher's A Bibliography of Sanitary WorTc in St. Louis During the Civil 
War in the Missouri Historical Society Collections, Vol. IV, p. 77; Anderson's 
The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 300. 

103 Anderson 's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, pp. 298, 

104 Loyal Work in Missouri in The North American Eeview, Vol. XCVIII, 
pp. 523, 524. 

105 Loyal WorTc in Missouri in The North American Eeview, Vol. XCVIII, 
pp. 523, 524. 


Early in the life of the Commission the State legislature 
of Missouri granted seventy-five thousand dollars for the 
relief of Missouri troops, which sum was by special arrange- 
ment placed in the general fund of the Commission. In 
January, 1863, several men in Boston raised thirty-five 
thousand dollars for the Western Commission, and in St. 
Louis, during the ^^frozen week" of January, 1864, collec- 
tions of thirty thousand dollars were made. A New Eng- 
land woman set aside one of the rooms in her house, desig- 
nating it as the ''Missouri Eoom,'' in which she received 
donations for the Western Commission. The supplies 
which she collected were valued at seventeen thousand dol- 
lars, and these, with nearly an equal amount in cash, were 
forwarded to St. Louis.^^^ 

At the close of the year 1863 and early in 1864, the funds 
of the Commission were running low, and in order to in- 
crease them it was decided to hold, at St. Louis, a sanitary 
fair such as had been held in many places by branches of the 
United States Sanitary Commission. Arrangements were 
soon made and during May the fair, which proved a great 
success, was held. The net proceeds amounted to $554,591 
— the result of contributions of money and goods from all 
over the United States and abroad.^^^ 

Like the other Sanitary Commissions, the western organi- 
zation was granted railroad and transportation facilities 
and many similar services, free of charge, which meant a 
great saving in expenses. ''From St. Louis to New Or- 
leans, from Pea Ridge to Chattanooga, by every commander 
of the Department of the Missouri and every general in the 
field, by the head of the Western Medical Department and 

100 Loyal Work in Missouri in The North American Eeview, Vol. XCVIII, 
pp. 522, 523. 

107 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, pp. 309- 



the various medical directors, by quartermasters and trans- 
portation-masters, and all other officers, the Commission 
and its agents have been most kindly recognized, and have 
scarcely ever solicited a favor in vain."^^^ 

In the performance of its work, the Western Sanitary 
Commission, whenever possible, cooperated with the United 
States Sanitary Commission and its branches, with the 
Christian Commission, and with local Aid Societies.^^^ No 
attention was paid to State or sectional lines. As expressed 
at that time, it was ^^the soldier of the Union .... not 
the citizen of Missouri or Massachusetts'' whom the Com- 
mission served. Supplies and contributions came from all 
sources and they were distributed upon the same broad ba- 
sis.^^^ Donations came from all the northern States, espe- 
cially from Michigan and the Northwest ; but Philadelphia, 
New York, Providence, and Boston were specially lavish in 
their gifts. *'By January, 1864, more than two hundred 
thousand dollars in cash had been received, of which St. 
Louis and Missouri had donated more than half ; while the 
distant States of California and Massachusetts had each 
contributed fifty thousand dollars. "^^^ 

The outlay of the Western Sanitary Commission in money 
and goods for the years 1862 and 1863 averaged $50,000 per 
month. This money went towards the prevention and re- 
lief of suffering, with a reduction of only one and one-half 
per cent to cover the total cost of salaries, agencies, and 

"^08 Loyal WorTc in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 521. 

109 Loyal WorTc in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 528. 

Loyal WorTc in Missouri in The North American Beview, Vol. XCVIII, 
pp. 522, 523. 

Ill Anderson 's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, pp. 295, 


distribution.^ ^2 From the beginning to the close of its ac- 
tivities $3,500,000 worth of supplies and nearly $1,000,000 
more in cash were received by the Commission.^ *^No 
sanitary work undertaken during the war, East or West, 
North or South, was more efficiently performed than that 
directed from St. Louis says a recent writer. *^And all 
this vast amount of work was performed, millions of dol- 
lars' worth of supplies distributed and used, thousands of 
meals provided for the hungry, hundreds of thousands of 
sick and homeless men temporarily lodged, by an organiza- 
tion of some half a dozen private citizens of St. Louis, none 
of whom were paid or had had previous experience. "^^^ 



The people of Iowa were not behind the citizens of other 
sections of the country in shouldering their share of the 
burdens occasioned by the outbreak of the Civil War. No 
sooner had the men of the State begun to answer the call 
to arms than those who remained behind commenced to plan 
and to work for the purpose of making army life as agree- 
able as possible. 


The first movements were unorganized, separate comuni- 
ties attempting to make provision for their own troops. 
Large quantities of supplies were collected and sent by in- 
ns Loyal Work in Missouri in The North American Eeview, Vol. XCVIII, 
p. 521. 

113 Anderson's The Story of a Border City During The Civil War, p. 296. 

114 Usher's A Bibliography of Sanitary Worh in St. Louis During the Civil 
War in the Missouri Historical Society Collections, Vol. IV, p. 73. 


dividuals directly to their friends and relatives in camps 
and hospitals ; and in many places local soldiers ' aid socie- 
ties were organized to supply the company or regiment 
which represented those particular localities. An effort 
to systematize and unite the work of the whole State was 
first made by the women of Keokuk, under the leadership of 
Mrs. Annie Wittenmyer. The Keokuk society, organized 
during the summer of 1861, at once entered upon the work 
in behalf of the men who were serving their country in the 
army.^^'^ One of the first steps taken by the organization 
was to send Mrs. Wittenmyer, the corresponding secretary, 
to visit Iowa soldiers in their camps and ascertain their 
greatest needs in order that the work at home might be di- 
rected along the most efficient lines. The first of August 
found Mrs. Wittenmyer in St. J oseph, Missouri, whither she 
had gone to visit the Second Iowa Regiment ; but not finding 
the regiment there, she followed it to St. Louis.^^^ That 
the women at Keokuk were busy is shown by the report of 
an entertainment given during August by the Aid Society 
in order to raise funds for their work, at which the net pro- 
ceeds amounted to something over one hundred and fifty 

Once the work at Keokuk was well under way, the Aid 
Society reached out in an effort to obtain the cooperation of 
the women of the entire State. Soldiers ' Aid Societies had 
already been formed in some other towns and they were 
urged to work with the Keokuk forces. Where no steps had 
as yet been taken to launch such enterprises the people were 
asked to do so. On the thirtieth of August, Mrs. Wittenmy- 
er, acting for the Keokuk organization, sent a letter to the 
women of Des Moines inviting them ^^to effect a similar 

115 Muscatine Weekly Journal, November 6, 1863. 

116 Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), August 5, 1861. 

117 Des Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), August 19, 1861. 


organization, and co-operate with them in supplying articles 
of comfort to the Iowa Volunteers, and especially in pro- 
viding their hospitals with such comforts and conveniences 
as the Government does not provide. "^^^ Early in Septem- 
ber a Keokuk paper carried a message addressed ^'To the 
Ladies of Iowa", with a request that it be copied by papers 
throughout the State. In this address the women were 
urged to organize societies in their respective districts and 
work in conjunction with the Keokuk society. It explained 
that the members of the latter organization would be in 
direct communication with the State troops and could keep 
their auxiliaries posted concerning all items of interest. 
Packages were to be sent, express prepaid, to the Soldiers^ 
Aid Society of Keokuk, whence they would be forwarded 
free of charge to their destinations.^ 


Early in October, Governor Kirkwood conceived the 
idea of an organized and united action that should excite 
and direct the whole work of the State. ' ^ The existing situ- 
ation, the Governor thought, ^'was attended with so much 
expense and large losses of goods, and was so uncertain in 
its operations" as to need strengthening.^ 20 Accordingly 
on October 10, 1861, he sent the following letter to Rev. A. 
J. Kynett of Lyons : 

I have observed with pleasure that at various points in this State 
voluntary associations are being organized with a view to provide 
our sick and wounded soldiers with articles essential to their com- 
fort and not furnished by the Government, while in hospitals. In 
order to encourage the formation of such societies and make them 
efficient, I request that you will form such societies in the various 

'i'ifi Council Blufs Nonpareil, September 14, 1861. 

i'i^Q Dcs Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), September 16, 1861. 

120 Beport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 3. 



communities in the State, and perfect a system by which contribu- 
tions thus made will reach those of our citizen soldiers who may be 
in need. I desire that societies already formed, and hereafter 
organized, will co-operate with you in your mission. 

Mr. Kynett, after consulting friends who were interested 
in the movement, recommended the creation of a State Sani- 
tary Commission, similar to the United States Sanitary 
Commission. To avoid the loss of time and to eliminate 
the necessary expense attached to the holding of a conven- 
tion of citizens of the State, and since both the United States 
Sanitary Commission and the Western Sanitary Commis- 
sion had been established by appointment, Mr. Kynett ad- 
vised that the Governor appoint the members of the Iowa 
Commission. Accordingly on October 13, 1861, Governor 
Kirkwood named as members J. C. Hughes, M. D., of Keo- 
kuk, president ; Rev. Geo. F. Magoun of Lyons, secretary ; 
Hiram Price of Davenport, treasurer ; Rev. A. J. Kynett of 
Lyons, corresponding secretary and general agent; Hon. 
Elijah Sells of Des Moines ; Rev. Bishop Lee of Davenport ; 
Hon. George G. Wright of Keosauqua ; Rev. Bishop Smyth 
of Dubuque; Hon. Caleb Baldwin of Council Bluffs; Rev. 
G. B. Jocelyn of Mt. Pleasant; Hon. Wm. F. Coolbaugh of 
Burlington; Ezekiel Clark of Iowa City; and Hon. Lincoln 
Clark of Dubuque. In his letter appointing these men, the 
Governor styled the new organization the Army Sanitary 
Commission for the State of Iowa, but it was usually re- 
ferred to thereafter as the Iowa Sanitary Commission.^^^ 

Mr. Kynett at once commenced the organization of local 
societies. On the 25th of October he issued through the 
press an appeal to the women of Iowa in behalf of the sick 
and wounded soldiers, in which he stated that, although the 
United States Sanitary Commission had served the East 
very effectively it did ^^not seem to have been intended" to 

121 Eeport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1864, p. 3. 


bring relief to the su:fferings of the men in the armies of the 
West. There was, however, great need for relief, as some 
of the Iowa regiments had already been declared unfit for 
service ; and it was the plan and purpose of the State Com- 
mission to see that the soldiers from Iowa were cared for. 
The appeal recommended that societies be formed imme- 
diately *4n every town, village and neighborhood in the 
State"; that committees be appointed to solicit subscrip- 
tions of cash and supplies ^^from every loyal citizen"; and 
that a portion of time in each week be set apart for the mak- 
ing of such articles as might be needed. A uniform consti- 
tution for such societies was proposed, and the secretary 
of each local organization was requested to report to the 
State Commission, as soon as organized and each month 
thereafter, the amount of money in the treasury and the 
number and value of articles on hand. Each society was 
instructed to hold its money and supplies subject only to the 
order of the president and secretary of the State Commis- 
sion to be forwarded from time to time as directed by 


Soon after the issue of this call by Mr. Kynett of the 
Army Sanitary Commission there was sounded the first 
note of the discord which later hampered the sanitary work 
of the State. The call had made no reference to those local 
societies already at work, nor to the broader activities of the 
Keokuk organization, the supporters of which resented this 
neglect and voiced their criticism of the new body through 
the public press. An article appeared in one of the Keokuk 
papers, reviewing the accomplishments already achieved by 
the women of Keokuk and the State, and containing a severe 

122 Muscatine Weeldy Journal, November 1, 1861. 



criticism of the Army Sanitary Commission. For three or 
four months, the article stated, the women had been devot- 
ing their time and energy to organizing Soldiers' Aid Socie- 
ties and collecting and preparing sanitary goods. As a 
result of these efforts, societies had gradually been formed 
all over the State and a general interest created in the work, 
until at the time when the Army Commission was estab- 
lished the local aid associations were ^'in very fair working 
order, and, in the hands of the benevolent women who in- 
itiated them and rendered them effective, gave promise and 
assurance of being equal to the work they had taken in 
hand.'' Under the patronage of these societies delegates 
had been sent to the hospitals in Missouri and at Cairo, 
where they investigated the conditions and wants of the 
Iowa soldiers and reported the situation by correspondence 
to the Aid Societies of the State. As a result ^^very con- 
siderable supplies of all articles needed" were forwarded 
to the hospitals in Missouri. ' ' The women were all earnest- 
ly interested and were doing up matters in their own way, 
without sounding a trumpet before them or magnifying 
their efforts by eliciting the services of the Honorables of 
our State in order to blazon them abroad. ' ' 

Then, continued the article, ^^an idea seems to have 
struck our State authorities. This thing must be stopped ; 
there is a great deal of glory running to waste in this mat- 
ter; and we must make haste to bottle it up for distribu- 
tion amongst our honokables. Besides, there is a chance 
for salaries and fees in carrying out this benevolent meas- 
ure which may be parceled out to the wealthy men of the 
State, and then there are printing jobs for which the State 
can pay and thereby secure the services of the editors of 
Iowa to puff our Honorables and glorify our tardy benevo- 
lence to our sick and wounded soldiers. 

VOL. XVI — 14 


^^A Sanitary Commission has been constituted, two Bish- 
ops, two or three Reverends, three or four Honorables and 
three or four Bankers constitute the corporators and osten- 
sible members of this Commission and they are to take con- 
trol and direction of the entire subject matter/' In issu- 
ing their appeal to the women of Iowa, declared the article, 
the members of the Commission ignored ^'the existence of 
any Soldiers' Aid Societies and scold because nothing has 
been done in the State by the ladies to relieve the sick and 
wounded soldiers. And we presume that the gentlemen 
constituting that Commission have taken so little interest 
in the subject that they were substantially in entire igno- 
rance of what has been done.'' In closing, the article re- 
ferred to the Army Sanitary Commission as being without 
a parallel in the annals of peace or war in the history of the 
world, ancient or modern ' ' in that not a single medical man 
was named as a member of the body.^^^ 

Such a criticism represented a prejudiced view rather 
than the actual circumstances. It is true that the appeal 
issued by the Army Sanitary Commission did not refer to 
the societies already in operation, but in the letter of Gov- 
ernor Kirkwood, in which Mr. Kynett was asked to systema- 
tize the sanitary work of the State, reference was made to 
the societies which were then under way. Since the Army 
Sanitary Commission was created for the purpose of collec- 
ting and distributing supplies, and not for the rendering of 
preventive service as was the United States Sanitary Com- 
mission, it does not seem essential that the medical profes- 
sion should have been represented ; and yet the president of 
the Commission, Dr. J. C. Hughes, was at the time Surgeon- 
General for the State of Iowa. 
As a matter of fact another representative of the press 

123 The Weelcly Gate City (Keokuk), November 25, 1861. 


of Keokuk expressed a more favorable view of the Commis- 
sion. This writer announced the appointment of the Com- 
mission, giving as its duty the investigation of ^'all things 
connected with the condition, position and general welfare 
of the regiments '\ The success of the Commission was 
also predicted by the writer. *^It seems to be expected'', 
he declared, ^^that this movement will have important re- 
sults in its influence upon soldiers, officers, and the State 
authorities. ' '^^^ 

Thus the formation of the Army Sanitary Commission, 
instead of centralizing all the relief work of the State under 
a single head, introduced a new agency without absorbing 
the organization already in existence at Keokuk under the 
leadership of Mrs. Wittenmyer. As a result there were for 
the next ten months two distinct organizations in the State 
working for the same cause, but not always working in 
harmony. Soldiers ' Aid Societies were organized in nearly 
all the large cities and towns, some sending their contribu- 
tions to the soldiers through the Commission and others 
through the Ladies' Aid Society of Keokuk.^^^ 

That Mrs. Wittenmyer and the Keokuk society had exert- 
ed considerable influence over the State is shown by the re- 
ports from various local branches. The reports made by 
Mrs. Wittenmyer upon the condition of the camps and the 
needs of the soldiers were sent over the entire State and 
brought many returns. The first report of the Cedar Rap- 
ids Soldiers ' Aid Society stated that the women of that city 
had sent their first box of stores on November 23rd ^^to the 
parent Society at Keokuk". The report also contained the 
following statement: 

124 Moines Valley Whig (Keokuk), November 4, 1861. 
^^^Anamosa EureTca, November 22, 1861; Newberry's The U. S. Sanitary 
Commission in the Valley of the Mississippi, p. 239. 


We know that these articles will reach those for whom they are 
intended as the Keokuk Society is in correspondence with the 
proper authorities at the hospitals and has arrangements for send- 
ing them to the places where they are most needed. 

We are in correspondence with the agent of that Society, who 
has lately returned from a visit to the hospitals, and are thereby 
directed what way to make our labors most effective.^^e 

Early in December the Council Bluffs Society, which had 
been in operation since August under the name of the Mite 
Society, held a meeting to consider the organization of an 
auxiliary to the State Sanitary Commission. A proposition 
to merge the Mite Society into a society to assist the Army 
Sanitary Commission was presented and defeated. It was 
decided to continue the Mite Society as formerly conducted, 
except that future proceeds were to be sent to the society 
at Keokuk ^^for the benefit of all the regiments, instead of 
remitting direct to the 4th, as heretofore ''.^^^ 

The importance of relief work among the soldiers was 
recognized by Adjutant General Baker, as is shown by the 
following statement from his report of 1861 : 

More soldiers are lost by death from disease, by sickness in the 
Hospitals, by discharges from service on account of disability, occa- 
sioned by exposure in camp, and on the march, and for the want of 
sufficient protection and proper care, than by deaths and wounds 
on the battle field. 

Anything and everything that can be done for the benefit of the 
soldier, to make him comfortable on the march, in the camp, or in 
the hospital, are of the highest importance, and should be promptly 
attended to by National and State Legislators.^^s 

Three days after the Army Sanitary Commission had j 

issued its appeal to the people of Iowa, asking for coopera- j 

tion, the Adjutant General appointed a committee to visit | 

the Iowa volunteers wherever they might be found, to report j 

120 T/iC Cedar Valley Times (Cedar Eapids), December 5, 1861. 

127 Council Bluffs Nonpareil, August 24, December 7, 1861. , 

"128 Beport of the Adjutant General of Iowa, 1861, pp. 5, 6. 



upon their sanitary condition, and to ascertain their needs. 
The men composing the committee were Surgeon-General 
Hughes, president of the Sanitary Commission, and James 
J. Lindley and George H. Parker of Davenport. These 
men set out immediately to visit the Iowa regiments sta- 
tioned in Illinois and Missouri. A careful survey was made 
of the conditions surrounding all the Iowa soldiers and a 
full report was made to the Adjutant General. Although 
this committee was created by order of the Adjutant Gener- 
al, it was very generally considered as an agent of the Sani- 
tary Commission. In many cases the press of the period 
referred to its work as a part of that of the State Commis- 
sion. This idea was probably due to the fact that Surgeon- 
General Hughes, president of the Commission, was chair- 
man of the committee.^^® 

In November, 1861, Mrs. Wittenmyer visited the hospi- 
tals in the West as agent for the Keokuk society. Upon 
her return she made a report to the women of Iowa, telling 
of the poor condition of the troops and giving suggestions 
for more effective work.^^*^ Chief among her recommenda- 
tions was that two experienced women nurses should be 
sent to each regiment to assist in caring for the sick and 
wounded. She criticised the work of the Army Sanitary 
Commission, complaining that ^^some of the Surgeons are 
intemperate, lacking in moral character, overbearing, and 
exhibiting but little concern for the comfort and cleanliness 
of the sick."^^^ Some of the surgeons, she declared, would 
*'best secure the interest of themselves and their fellow- 
men by resigning immediately. ''^'^^'^ People were urged to 

'^'2^ Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, November 1, 1861; Eeport of the Adjutant 
General of Iowa, 1861, pp. 481-487. 

130 Council Bluffs Nonpareil, November 30, 1861. 

131 Anamosa Eurelca, December 13, 1861. 

132 The Cedar Valley Times (Cedar Rapids), December 5, 1861. 


forward their contributions to the Aid Society at Keokuk, 
from whence they would be taken immediately to the place 
of greatest need.^^^ 

Towards the close of November Mrs. Wittenmyer again 
set out to visit the troops in the field, this time going to 
Missouri and Illinois, where she distributed supplies valued 
at $785, which were not nearly sufficient to relieve the great 
destitution existing among the soldiers. The report of the 
Keokuk Ladies ' Aid Society for the period from November 
15 to December 15, 1861, again suggested that women all 
over the State should organize societies and cooperate with 
the women of Keokuk, since the latter had the advantage 
of being situated on the Mississippi Kiver and through 
their corresponding secretary kept in close touch with the 
needs of the army. The report acknowledged the receipt of 
supplies from Council Bluffs, Warren, Bentonsport, Des 
Moines, Indian Prairie, Muscatine, Davenport, Cedar 
Eapids, and Dubuque.^^^ 

Upon her return from visiting the hospitals at Helena 
and Vicksburg in March, Mrs. Wittenmyer was asked by 
Governor Kirkwood for a report on the conditions which 
she had found to exist. The condition of most of the Iowa 
troops she reported as being ^^very unfavorable". The 
absence of vegetables in the food supply had resulted '4n 
scurvy, debility and a general depreciation of the strength 
of the forces and it was urged that steps be taken to supply 
the men with * Vegetables, stimulants and antiscorbutics. ' ' 
The articles most needed were potatoes, onions, sour- 
krout, corn meal, pickles, dried fruit, cranberries, molasses, 
soda crackers, toasted rusk, butter, eggs, condiments and 
stimulants. — Cider vinegar would also be acceptable.'^ 

133 The WeeUy Gate City (Keokuk), November 25, 1861. 

134 The Weeldy Gate City (Keokuk), December 2, 23, 1861. 



Upon receiving this report the Governor appealed to the 
State to supply these necessities, stating that the report of 
Mrs. Wittenmyer had been more than corroborated by 
other reliable testimony. He proposed that ^ ^ every locality 
see to the good work through their own local agencies, and 
do it at once", and directed that goods from any part of 
Iowa put on board any of the lines of transportation, and 
addressed to Mrs. Wittenmyer, in care of Partridge and 
Company of St. Louis, would be sure to go where most 
needed, all charges being paid by the government.^^^ 

The report of the Keokuk organization for June, 1862, 
showed that goods had been received from Salem, Bentons- 
port, Keosauqua, Kirkville, Des Moines, and Denmark, 
which indicated that the Keokuk society was receiving the 
support of many local societies.^^^ 

Early in May, 1862, a call was issued for the local Aid 
Societies of the State to send delegates to a convention to 
be held at Davenport on the 28th, in connection with a meet- 
ing of the Army Sanitary Commission. At that time but 
little interest in relief work was manifested in the State, 
1 and it was the purpose of this convention to awaken a 
t greater response. The call for the convention was distrib- 
j uted in circular form and through the newspapers, so as 
I to cover the whole State, but the attendance was small, only 
the counties of Des Moines, Louisa, Scott, Clinton, Dubuque, 
Jackson, and Delaware being represented. The Iowa Sol- 
diers^ Eelief Association was formed with Col. William B. 
Allison of Dubuque, president; John Collins, vice presi- 
dent; and D. N. Eichardson and Edward Eussell, secre- 
I taries. Mr. Kynett made a full report of the work of the 
Army Sanitary Commission and requested the convention 

135 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
1^ II, pp. 507-511. 

I 136 The WeeUy Gate City (Keokuk), June 25, 1862. 


to establish an executive committee to have control of the 
business of the Commission. It was hoped that by thus 
giving" the people a part in the direction of the work, their 
interest would be greater. The convention, however, de- 
clined to take such action, but passed a resolution express- 
ing their confidence in the Commission, stating that they 
considered it indispensable and recommending all the 
Soldiers' Aid Societies in Iowa to '^assist and facilitate its 
operation. ' ' 

The report given at the convention by Mr. Kynett showed 
that supplies and stores for the army, contributed by Sol- 
diers' Aid Societies of the State, had been distributed by 
the Army Sanitary Commission to the amount of $18,600, 
in addition to $589.66 in cash which had been received. Be- 
fore the convention adjourned a committee on hospitals, 
consisting of Dr. S. 0. Edwards, Rev. A. J. Kynett, and 
J ohn G. Foote, was elected and an address to the people of 
Iowa was sent out by a committee composed of Rev. R. W. 
Keeler, Hiram Price, and Dr. J. Cleaves. The address 
stated the purpose of the Commission and described what it 
had accomplished. It pointed out that while several socie- 
ties, such as those at Keokuk, Dubuque, and Davenport, had 
done much to relieve the wants of the soldiers, they had 
evidently "labored under disadvantages to which they 
would not have been subjected, had they operated'' in con- 
nection with the regularly authorized State Commission. 
A recommendation was made that all local Aid Societies 
work through the Army Sanitary Commission. The Mus- 
catine Journal in commenting upon the convention con- 
cluded after a careful examination of the proceedings "that 
it appears to have been a very lame affair. ' ' 

i^'T Eeport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 18G4, p. 19; The Weeldy Gate 
City (Kookiik), July 9, 1862; Muscatine Weeldy Journal, June 8, 1862. 




During the first week in J uly, 1862, upon returning from 
a six weeks tour among Iowa regiments in Tennessee, Mrs. 
Wittenmyer called a convention to be held at Davenport 
to devise a plan for uniting the relief agencies of the State. 
The result was the appointment of a delegation, including 
Mrs. Wittenmyer, to request the Governor to appoint some- 
one to assist her in her work — someone who might act as 
agent of all the sanitary interests in the State, and go into 
the field to take charge of supplies and assist in their distri- 
bution. A few days after the close of the convention, when 
speaking before the Iowa City Ladies' Aid Society, Mrs. 
Wittenmyer described the relation which then existed be- 
tween the Army Sanitary Commission and the Aid Societies 
of the State. They had not been cooperating thus far, she 
said, and while many of the contributions from the principal 
towns of the State appeared in the Commission's report as 
having been sent out by its auxiliaries, they were in fact 
sent to her to be distributed. Mrs. Wittenmyer further 
stated that while the Commission received funds from the 
State, they kept no agent in the field, while she had more 
work than she could do and received no compensation in 
any way. She was recognized by both State and Federal 
governments as a sanitary agent; had free conveyance for 
herself and goods; and enjoyed the confidence and assist- 
ance of the General Medical Directors. 

As a result of the Davenport convention the opposing 
factions seem to have agreed upon a plan of cooperation. 
In a letter from Mrs. Wittenmyer, the public was informed 
that the Iowa Army Sanitary Commission and the Ladies 
Soldiers' Aid Societies had united their efforts, and that 

138 The State Press (Iowa City), July 12, 1862. The Iowa City Ladies' Aid 
Society voted their confidence in Mrs. Wittenmyer and decided to continue to 
distribute their goods through her organization. 


thereafter the correspondence would be carried on by Mr. 
Kynett, corresponding secretary of the State Commission 
and Miss L. Knowles, corresponding secretary of the 
Ladies Soldiers' Aid Society of Keokuk. 

In August, 1862, Governor Kirkwood assigned Lieutenant 
Colonel Ira M. Gitf ord of Davenport, one of his special aids, 
to the duty of looking after the wants of the Iowa soldiers. 
Gilford, who had already been in the field and was acquaint- 
ed with the conditions and needs of the troops, was to visit 
the camps for the purpose of distributing stores and caring 
for the general comfort of the soldiers. According to the 
Governor's instructions he was to cooperate with or act as 
an authorized agent of the ^'different Sanitary Commis- 
sions, Aid Societies, or other benevolent associations 
throughout the State, having in view the relief of our citizen 
soldiery. "^'^'^ A law was passed on September 11th, au- 
thorizing the Governor to appoint two or more agents, one 
of whom was to be Mrs. Wittenmyer, as sanitary agents to 
visit the troops in the field for the purpose of furnishing 
special relief.^^^ For some time Mrs. Wittenmyer was the 
only State agent in the field, and it was not until early in 
1863 that Dr. Ennis of Lyons, was named by the Governor 
to work with her. He was later succeeded by Mr. John 
Clark of Cedar Rapids, who served for three or four months, 
followed by Dr. A. S. Maxwell of Davenport. They spent 
their time among the men in camps and hospitals, where 
they acted as agents of the various organizations, although 
they were paid by the State. A big field was open to them 
and their labors were ^'well received in the army, and their 

130 The WeeTchj Gate City (Keokuk), Au^st 6, 1862. 

140 Shambaugh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
ri, p. 503. 

y^-^Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1862, pp. 47, 48. 



efforts in behalf of our sick and wounded soldiers have 
proved invaluable. ' ' 

For about a year the various factions continued to co- 
operate. There were many demands for fresh vegetables 
because of threatened attacks of scurvy. At Harrison's 
Landing, where some Iowa soldiers were in camp, ten cents 
was the price of a single onion, so great was the demand 
for these vegetables. At the soldiers ' hospital at Keokuk 
there were over thirteen hundred patients from many 
States and they were constantly in need of supplies.^^^ 
Mrs. Wittenmyer visited the regiments in Arkansas and 
reported that there were four thousand soldiers sick and 
unprovided for.^^^ A letter from Governor Kirkwood to 
State Agent John Clark, written near the close of the year 
1862, stated that Mr. Gifford had just returned from Mis- 
souri and reported a deplorable condition among the troops 
at Springfield. The Governor ordered Clark to stay in 
1 Missouri as long as necessary in order to see that the sol- 
' diers were given proper care. See the Medical Director, 
Gen. Curtis, Gen. Herron'', he directed. *^You need not 
I be backward or mealy-mouthed in discussing the state of 
affairs, and in cursing everyone who wont do his duty. 
I Talk right hard, and have our boys cared for.''^^^ 

In August, 1863, Mr. Kynett recommended to the Gover- 
nor that a branch of the Iowa Army Sanitary Commission 
! be established at Dubuque, to direct the work in the north- 
! ern part of the State. The Governor followed this sugges- 
tion and appointed Mrs. P. H. Conger, Mrs. J. Clement, and 

I -^^2 Senate Journal, 1864, p. 200; The State Press (Iowa City), August 9, 
I i43r/ie State Press (Iowa City), August 9, 1862. 

i'i44r7ie WeeMy Gate City (Keokuk), October 15, 1862. 
145 Dubuque SemiW eeTdy Times, September 1, 1863. 
Lathrop 's The Life and Times of Samuel J. KirTcwood, p. 235. 


Mrs. S. Root to take charge of the branch. All towns west 
and northwest of Dubuque were requested to send their 
contributions to Dubuque, from whence they were shipped 
to the central depots with less delay and fewer mistakes.^^^ 



From the beg-inning of the relief work in Iowa, many 
complaints concerning the work of the various agencies were 
made and circulated by soldiers and others who visited 
them in their camps. Soldiers wrote letters home stating 
that they never received supplies which were supposed to 
have been sent; and the charge was frequently made that 
such goods were either used by the army officials and men 
higher up or were given to their favorites. Such charges 
did much to discourage donors and caused many people to 
ignore the State organizations and endeavor to send their 
donations directly to the soldiers. 


Early in the year 1863 Father Emonds of Iowa City 
visited the Catholic soldiers in the hospitals with a view to 
administering relief. In a letter from Arkansas he 
charged that Mrs. Wittenmyer had tried to sell butter and 
eggs to the Sisters of Charity, who were caring for a great 
number of sick and wounded soldiers, and when they would 
not buy she refused them sanitary supplies, although there 
was great need for them. Mrs. "Wittenmyer answered that 
there was no foundation for such charges; that she had 
never offered to sell butter or eggs or anything else; and 

^'^'^ Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 7; Dubuque Semi- 
Weeldy Times, October 23, 1863. 



that she had never refused to give the Sisters sanitary 
stores. Father Emonds did not drop the matter, but in a 
second letter reiterated his previous charges. He declared 
that Mrs. Wittenmyer had declined to give aid to the Sis- 
ters ' hospital at Memphis, when the Sisters refused to buy 
butter and eggs. Furthermore, he said that Mrs. Witten- 
myer had furnished military stores to the Third Iowa 
Cavalry only after they had bought a liberal share of butter 
and eggs from her. When the Captain had asked how she 
could sell these articles, she explained that there was a 
slight margin of profit which went to the Sanitary Commis- 
sion. Father Emonds declared that many of the Iowa regi- 
ments never received '^a cent's worth of sanitary stores", 
and many did not know who Mrs. Wittenmyer was.^"*^ 

A Chicago paper stated in June, 1863, that ^^the many 
favors of our Iowa women", about which so much was writ- 
ten in the newspapers were never received by the Iowa 
troops. The supplies were either given to favorites or 
someone was practicing rascality for their own benefit." 
The writer advised that in the future supplies be sent per- 
sonally or kept at home and used for the benefit of soldiers' 
families. In March, 1863, the Muscatine Journal con- 
tained a notice that ^^as there are so many scoundrels in 
the hospitals . . . . the ladies will send some one in 
charge of the articles, to see them properly used."^^^ 

On the other hand, many letters were written by men in 
the army denying the misuse of sanitary stores and praising 
the work of the women at home. One Iowa soldier, in writ- 
ing on the subject, gave as his opinion that the Aid Societies 
were supplying all the hospitals alike as far as possible, 

148 The State Press (Iowa City), February 7, March 14, 28, 1863. 
i49T7ie State Press (Iowa City), June 27, 1863. 
150 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, March 6, 1863. 


and although improper use might be made of some of the 
stores, sufficient good was being accomplished by the sani- 
tary work ^ ^ to encourage all its friends to give it all the sup- 
port they can. ''1^1 A letter written by General Grenville 
M. Dodge in answer to a criticism of the relief work of the 
State can probably be accepted as a true representation of 
the actual conditions. General Dodge stated that he had 
had command of many of the Iowa regiments, and that very 
few regiments had left the State with which he had not come 
in contact. He declared that of all the regiments which he 
had observed he had not seen one that ^^did not receive 
great and lasting benefit from the noble efforts of the Ladies 
of Iowa through the Sanitary Commission.'' Moreover, 
General Dodge had met most of the field agents of the Com- 
mission and was positive that they were honest. They had 
worked long and hard, he said, and could never be repaid 
for the good which they had done.^^^ 

Undoubtedly a large quantity of the contributions sent 
to the armies never reached their destinations, and thus 
it was often assumed that they had been misused. One 
explanation was that many times donations were sent by 
river, by express, or by freight directly to hospitals, officers, 
or private soldiers. As there were no government permits 
or persons to vouch for them, these contributions were often 
stopped enroute and confiscated by United States officers 
employed to prevent smuggling. Goods were in some cases 
sent out marked as sanitary goods when intended for specu- 
lators or for the Confederate forces, and this fact led to the 
seizure of all goods not properly vouched for. Again, many 
things were sent by express and the charges were so high 
that the men refused to accept them. Large amounts of 

Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, August 7, 1863. 
Duhuquc Scmi-Weeldy Times, September 25, 1863. 



sanitary stores collected in express offices and depots be- 
cause they were never delivered to the camps, and the sol- 
diers receiving no notice that they were at the office, never 
called for them and they were finally sold at auction.^^^ 

Mrs. Wittenmyer pointed out that it was not surprising 
that complaints should arise, when consideration was given 
to the large number of troops in the field and the compara- 
tively small supply of goods furnished for their use. The 
demand for sanitary stores had always greatly exceeded the 
supply, and the absence of such articles as the Commission 
furnished was often taken as evidence that they had been 
misused before reaching the soldiers. Furthermore, pota- 
toes, onions, fruit, and pickles were sometimes furnished by 
the commissaries when conditions were favorable and hence, 
when such things were furnished by the Sanitary Commis- 
sion, the soldiers often supposed them to be government 


The Iowa Army Sanitary Commission had not been long 
in operation before it realized the impracticability of at- 
tempting to maintain separate relief service for the Iowa 
soldiers, and almost from the first it cooperated with the 
Federal commissions. For the first year the Iowa Commis- 
sion operated through the Western Sanitary Commission, 
for the reason that most of the Iowa soldiers were located 
west of the Mississippi, in the territory covered by the West- 
ern Commission. Moreover, the stores could be sent from 
Iowa to St. Louis by the Northern Line Packet Company, 
free of charge. When navigation was closed, however, it 
was necessary to turn to other channels of distribution, and 
the Iowa Commission then placed itself in the relation of 

153 Buhuque Semi-WeeUy Times, September 15, 1863. 

154 Senate Journal, 1864, pp. 201, 202. 


a brancli of the United States Sanitary Commission, through 
which it thereafter operated. Supplies were shipped to 
Chicago and from there were sent out, under the care of 
agents, free of charge on all railroads and on river boats 
furnished by the government and devoted exclusively to 
sanitary work. The United States Sanitary Commission 
made no distinctions along State lines, but treated all sol- 
diers alike, since they were all engaged in a single common 
cause — the preservation of the Union. To cooperate with 
the United States Sanitary Commission, said the Dubuque 
Times ^ was *^the only feasible manner for the people of 
Iowa to act'\^^^ 

Mrs. Wittenmyer, on the other hand, although supposed 
to be working with the Army Sanitary Commission, seemed 
to favor distribution through the Western Sanitary Com- 
mission at St. Louis, and with Mr. Maxwell, the only other 
State agent at that time, was cooperating with the latter 
association as far as possible. The attitude of Mrs. Witten- 
myer tended to favor the personal distribution of supplies 
directly to the Iowa soldiers. Although the Western Sani- 
tary Commission put all goods into a single fund to be dis- 
tributed without regard to State lines, yet the territory 
over which it operated was small and it dealt only with the 
troops of a few States. Thus goods sent from Iowa were 
more likely to reach Iowa soldiers through the Western j 
Commission than through the United States Sanitary Com- | 
mission. The development of this division of opinion con- 
cerning methods finally led Mrs. Wittenmyer to issue a call 
to the women of the State to meet and organize a new asso- 
ciation for the handling of relief work.^^^ ^'Sanitary and 

Eeport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1864, p. 11; I>uhuque Semi- 
WeeTcly Times, September 15, November 3, 1863. 

"^^9 Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 24 j Dubuque Semi- 
TV eeTcly Times, September 15, 1863. 



Belief Societies, Union and Loyal Leagues, Good Templars ^ 
Lodges and all other organizations that have lent assistance 
to the good work'' were urged to send delegates.^^^ 


Muscatine was chosen as the meeting place of the con- 
vention because it was the banner war county'' and 'Hhe 
Ladies ' Aid Society the banner society of the State ' '. The 
women met on October 7, 1863, the papers referring to the 
gathering as the convention of the ''loyal ladies of Iowa". 
Soon after the opening of the meeting a discussion arose 
as to ''the precise object of the convention, from which it 
appeared that many entertained vague and conflicting views 
in regard to it." One delegate from northern Iowa de- 
clared that the society which she represented and other 
organizations in that region had pledged their aid to the 
Northwestern Sanitary Commission of Chicago and she 
thought all the supplies from Iowa should be distributed 
in that manner. Another woman, from the southern part 
of the State, took an entirely opposite view and favored 
the formation of an independent State organization. ' ' She 
thought Iowa was able to take care of its own soldiers, and 
that Illinois should not meddle with us, especially when it is 
a well known fact that Illinois has tried to rob Iowa soldiers 
of honors won on battle-fields". 

Mrs. Wittenmyer then stated her views and offered the 
following resolution which was adopted: "That we unite 
ourselves into a State Sanitary Organization, for the pur- 
pose of promoting the Sanitary interests of the State and 
of building an orphan asylum. ' ' The new body was named 
the Iowa State Sanitary Commission, to distinguish it from 
the Army Sanitary Commission, a constitution and by-laws 

157 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, September 25, 1863. 

VOL. XVI — 15 


were adopted, and officers were elected, Mrs. Wittenmyer 
being made president.^^^ 

The preamble of the constitution stated that the organi- 
zation would work to secure ^^a large and constant supply 
of Sanitary goods, and a faithful application of the same," 
and for the establishment of a Soldiers' Orphans' Home. 
The approaching ^'Northwestern Fair" at Chicago was 
discussed and it was decided that any auxiliary societies 
wishing to contribute to the fair might do so. Mrs. Ely 
of Cedar Rapids and Mrs. N. H. Brainerd of Iowa City 
were named as the Iowa committee for the Fair. A resolu- 
tion was also adopted requesting all the churches to take up 
collections on Thanksgiving Day for the use of the new 
Commission, and a committee was appointed to ask the 
State legislature for further aid. 

Mr. Kynett of the Iowa Army Sanitary Commission, who 
had been referred to as being opposed to the organization 
proposed by this convention, was present and asked permis- 
sion to speak, which after some debate was granted. He 
said it was impracticable to distribute supplies in the field 
to Iowa soldiers only, and therefore the Commission which 
he represented, turned their donations over to the Chicago 
branch of the United States Sanitary Commission. He de- 
nied being opposed to the object of the convention, but 
regretted that the two organizations could not unite their 
efforts. Mrs. Wittenmyer in reply stated that she had rea- 
son to feel offended because of Mr. Kynett 's conduct to- 
wards her as State agent. She claimed to have higher 
authority than Mr. Kynett, inasmuch as she was appointed 
by authority of the legislature, while he was chosen by the 
Governor. In addition, her appointment was made sub- 
sequent to the appointment of Mr. Kynett.^^^ There were 

Muscatine Wccldy Journal, October 2, 9, 16, 1863. 
Muscatine Weekly Journal, October 16, 1863. 



now two organizations in the field once more, both aiming 
at the same end; and the two Commissions and the two 
agents seemed ''to be in competition ".^^^ 

Such a situation soon caused dissatisfaction among the 
people who were supporting the relief work. Early in 
November one of the State papers commented upon the 
complicated status of sanitary affairs in Iowa, and attrib- 
uted the unsatisfactory conditions ' ' to the conflicting inter- 
ests of different organizations having the same object in 
view.'' Such inharmonious action, it pointed out, tended 
**to alienate the sympathies of the people from the good 
cause which all have in view. ' ' It recommended that every- 
one should support the Iowa State Sanitary Commission. 
Not only was there general dissatisfaction in the State over 
the unsatisfactory situation due to the opposition of the 
various factions, but for some time there had been a grow- 
ing sentiment that even when there had been but a single 
organization, it was not so constituted as to secure the 
desired results. With the added drawback of two compet- 
ing associations this complaint became more insistent. 
Mrs. James Harlan, who had from the beginning of the 
j war been caring for the sick and wounded in the hospitals 
and upon the battlefields, summed up these defects in a let- 
ter to the Dubuque Times. Many times she had ministered 
to the soldiers upon the field '^before the smoke of the con- 
flict had passed away", having had permission from the Sec- 
I retary of War to visit the armies and the field hospitals. 
Thus she was in a position to observe the work and relative 
efficiency of the various organizations. In many instances 
[ she had distributed goods for them and was in touch with 
their agents. In this published communication Mrs. Harlan 

160 Bubuque Semi-WeeUy Times, October 16, 1863. 

161 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, November Q, 1863. 


stated that she had at an early period noticed defects in the 
system of distributing supplies. There was no real head 
to the system; no home office at which accounts could be 
kept ; no arrangements for the regular visitation of the Iowa 
regiments; and no business arrangement for the shipping 
of goods. ^^The friends of the soldiers in the State/' de- 
clared Mrs. Harlan, ^^who have contributed hundreds of 
thousands of dollars worth of stores, demanded a more 
perfect system. "^'^^ So complicated had become the relief 
work of the State that Governor Kirkwood himself admitted 
that the situation was very discouraging. In a letter writ- 
ten on November 13th to Rev. C. G. Truesdell of Davenport, 
who was later made secretary of the Iowa Sanitary Commis- 
sion, the Governor wrote that at times he felt almost dis- 
heartened in regard to sanitary affairs. There seems to be 
so much jealousy and ill will among those engaged in the 
matter that it discourages me and will I fear discourage 
those who have been contributing so liberally for this pur- 
pose. "^^^ 



Many of the most active supporters of the relief work, 
realizing the difficulties which had arisen and fearing that 
a complete break-down might result if the existing situation 
should continue, decided after much consultation to issue 
a circular, calling a convention with a view to securing 
greater harmony and efficiency. The call issued early in 
November, was addressed to *Hhe ^Soldiers' Aid Societies,' 

162 Bu'buque Semi-Weelcly Times, December 4, 1863. 

'^^^ Kirkwood Military Letter Boole, No. 4, p. 173; Clark's Samuel Jordan 
Kirkwood, pp. 237, 238. 



Societies under the Auspices of the ^lowa Sanitary Commis- 
sion/ * Loyal Leagues/ and ^Soldiers' Christian Commis- 
sion, ' and all other Aid Societies in the State of Iowa ' \ and 
was signed by sixty-five women of the State, representing 
nineteen different cities and towns and who in most cases 
were officers of local aid societies. The names of sixty-eight 
men, including many of the leading citizens of the State, 
were appended as approving the proposed convention and 
hoping for its success.^'^* 


The following statement from the appeal concerning the 
status of relief work is interesting and presents a very good 
summary of the existing conditions : 

The undersigned, rejoicing in the success that has attended the 
efforts of the friends of the soldiers, in sending supplies to the sick, 
wounded, and destitute in field and hospital, have, nevertheless, 
observed that their efficiency might be very greatly increased, if 
perfect harmony, and a better understanding could be secured be- 
tween the different organizations and leading citizens. One of our 
State agents advises that all contributions sent from the State 
should be consigned to some house in St. Louis, where, we learn, 
they are delivered to the 'Western Sanitary Commission,' are 
merged into the common stock, and are sent to the army and hospi- 
tals, wherever in the judgment of its agents supplies are most 
needed, without reference to their origin. The officers of the Iowa 
Sanitary Commission advise that all contributions from Iowa 
should be forwarded to the Chicago Branch of the 'National Sani- 
tary Commission,' and through their officers and agents to the 
army and hospitals. When sent through this channel, we learn 
that our goods are, as in the other case, merged into the common 
stock at Chicago, — and are never afterwards known as Iowa goods. 
Others, ignoring these arrangements, have been carrying supplies 

i64^e2?or^ of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 23-26, Muscatine 
WeeUy Journal, November 6, 1863 ; Dubuque Semi-WeeJcly Times, November 6, 


directly to tlie field and hospitals under permits from the Secretary 
of War. 

And others, of high social position and commanding influence, 
of undoubted benevolence and large means, have stood aloof from 
all organizations and individual efforts, believing that selfish mo- 
tives and personal interests have promoted too many of those who 
have been most active in these enterprises. On these accounts many 
of those, the most efficient at the beginning of the war, have become 
lukewarm, and many societies have suspended operations.^^^ 

In view of this situation it was proposed that a convention, 
made up of delegates from all organizations in the State 
contributing to the relief work, should be held at Des Moines 
commencing on November 18, 1863. 

The purposes of the convention were stated under twelve 
separate heads: (1) to devise means to secure harmony 
among the relief agencies within the State; (2) to consider 
the question of whether supplies should be forwarded to 
the Western Sanitary Commission, or to the United States 
Sanitary Commission, or directly to the armies in the field; 
(3) to consider the advisability of establishing a central 
depot within the State; (4) to consider the increased effi- 
ciency which might be secured by the appointment of an 
agent to travel within the State, thus permitting the regular 
State agents to spend their whole time in the field; (5) to 
decide whether it would be advisable to ask for greater aid 
from the legislature or to sever, as far as practicable, all 
connections with the State government and rely solely upon 
the generosity of the people ; (6) to discuss whether women 
or men made the more efficient agents for carrying goods 
^^near the enemy's lines, and other exposed positions"; 
(7) to consider the possible advantages of employing women 
nurses in the hospitals; (8) to devise means to secure *'a 
regular, as well as constant supply of hospital goods'' ; (9) 

165 Ifiiscatme Weelcly Journal, November 6, 1863. 



to devise an adequate system of accounting for goods and 
securing care and fidelity on the part of the agents en- 
trusted" with supplies and money; (10) to discuss the nec- 
essity of paying salaries to the agents; (11) to undertake 
plans to provide for the comfort and welfare of the families 
of the soldiers, especially the widows and orphans; (12) ^'to 
consider such other pertinent business" as might be pre- 
sented at the convention. Each local society was requested 
to send, if possible, from two to five delegates, and it was 
suggested that men as well as women be admitted to honor- 
ary seats on the floor of the convention. 


Mrs. James Harlan and Mrs. Samuel McFarland traveled 
over the interior of the State in an effort to arouse interest 
in the convention ;^^^ and in response to the call more than 
two hundred delegates, representing all parts of the State, 

I met at Des Moines on November 18, 1863. A newspaper 

; account of the convention reads as follows : 

j The Women's Sanitary Convention convened to-day . . . . 

It is largely attended by delegates from every part of the State. 

The morning session was somewhat spicy, rival parties throwing 
t out scouts and sustaining picket lines to find the position of the 
i enemy and guard against attack. 

There are two parties in the convention, one of which is headed 
\ by Mrs. Annie Wittenmyer, the present State Sanitary Agent, and 
! the other by Rev. Mr. Kynett, of Davenport, claiming to represent 
I a separate State Sanitary Agency. A test vote this morning, as 
] well as the report on permanent officers this evening, would seem to 
I indicate that Mrs. Wittenmyer and her friends are in the minority. 

Colonel William M. Stone, Governor-elect, addressed the 
j meeting and his remarks, according to one report, ^^were 

I Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 24-26; Dubuque 

Semi-WeeTcly Times, November 6, 1863; Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, November 
6, 1863. 

167 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, November 6, 1863. 



like oil poured upon the troubled waters, and caused har- 
monious action when the convention seemed to be upon the 
point of hopeless disagreement/ '^^'^ 

After a full discussion of sanitary affairs the convention 
decided to organize a Commission to take charge of all the 
relief work in the State. A constitution was adopted which 
proposed that the new association should be known as the 
Iowa Sanitary Commission and should be composed of one 
member from each local sanitary organization in the State. 
Furthermore, it provided that the Iowa Sanitary Commis- 
sion should cooperate as far as practicable with both the 
United States Sanitary Commission and the Western Sani- 
tary Commission. An attempt was made to pass a motion 
to operate exclusively through the United States Sanitary 
Commission, but it was defeated by a vote of one hundred 
and fifteen to fifty-five — a result which was considered a 
triumph for the friends of Mrs. Wittenmyer. The officers 
designated in the constitution were a president, six vice 
presidents, one from each Congressional District, a record- 
ing secretary, a treasurer, and a board of control to be com- 
posed of six members, one from each Congressional Dis- 
trict. These officers were to be chosen by the convention 
and were to serve until the next annual meeting. The 
treasurer was required to give bond, and moneys could be 
disbursed by him only under the direction of the board of 
control on orders issued by the president and countersigned 
by the recording secretary. Annual meetings were to be 
held, but special meetings could be called by the board of 
control or by the written request of the presidents of thirty 
local societies. The board of control was to meet every 
three months, at which times the executive officers were to 
submit full reports of their operations, and these reports 

i«« Muscatine Weclcly Journal, November 27, 1863. 


were to be published in the newspapers of the State. Two 
or more agents were to be appointed to take charge of sani- 
tary matters in the field and visit the camps and hospitals. 

The officers elected were Justice John F. Dillon of Daven- 
port, president; Mrs. S. R. Curtis of Keokuk, Mrs. D. T. 
Newcomb of Davenport, Mrs. P. H. Conger of Dubuque, 
Mrs. William M. Stone of Knoxville, Mrs. W. W. Maynard 
of Council Bluffs, and Mrs. J. B. Taylor of Marshalltown, 
vice presidents; Rev. C. G. Truesdell of Davenport, secre- 
tary; Ezekiel Clark of Iowa City, treasurer; Rev. E. Skin- 
ner of De Witt, corresponding secretary; and Mr. G. W. Ed- 
wards of Mt. Pleasant, Mrs. J. F. Ely of Cedar Rapids, 
F. E. Bissell of Dubuque, N. H. Brainerd of Iowa City, 
James Wright of Des Moines, and Mrs. W. H. Plumb of 
Fort Dodge, members of the board of control.^^^ 

Mr. Kynett of the Army Sanitary Commission announced 
that he would turn over to the officers of the new body all 
the effects and business of the Commission lately repre- 
sented by him." A resolution was adopted to petition the 
legislature to enact a law creating a State fund to be dis- 
tributed in the several counties in proportion to the number 
of soldiers enlisted from each county, to be used for the re- 
lief of destitute families of soldiers. Miss Lawrence of 
Keokuk, Mrs. D. T. Newcomb of Davenport, and Miss L. 
Knowles of Keokuk were named to draft an address to the 
people of Iowa *^as to the nature and claims'' of the new 

j enterprise. The reports given at the convention by Mrs. 

i Wittenmyer and Mr. Kynett showed that the organizations 
which they represented had distributed goods to the value 

I of $150,000.1^^ 

I Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 26, 27, 28; Muscatine 

WeeMy Journal, November 27, 1863; Gue's History of Iowa, Vol. II, p. 421; 
Newberry's The U. S. Sanitary Commission in the Valley of the Mississippi, 
pp. 239, 240. 

170 Beport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 28 ; Muscatine WeeMy 
i Journal, November 27, 1863. 


In commenting upon the convention, the Burlington Week- 
ly Argus stated that its purpose was to secure harmony and 
efficiency among all the organizations engaged in minister- 
ing to the needs of the soldiers. * ' It was proposed to organ- 
ize a system that would secure the responsibility of agents,'' 
said the editor, ^^as by the present system, or rather the 
want of system, it is impossible for agents to account fully 
for what went through their hands. The blame was not due 
to the agents, but to the defective system." Because of the 
strife and discord evidenced at the meeting, and the pri- 
vate animosity and personal ambition to be gratified", the 
Burlington newspaper declared that * 4t is questionable, on 
the whole, whether it has not resulted in doing more harm 
than good. The truth is, that the management of the sani- 
tary matters of the State has grown into an importance, in 
a pecuniary point of view, sufficient to attract the cupidity 
of the speculative, and hence much of the strife in the con- 
vention. "^^^ 

Mrs. Harlan, on the other hand, considered the outcome 
of the convention to be very satisfactory and one which met 
with ^^the approval of nearly all who were present, and 
which it is believed will secure the harmony, efficiency, and 
accountability of agents, so much desired." She pointed 
out that the new arrangement would not interfere with the 
work of the agents appointed by the State, the aim being 
only ^^to improve the system; to classify the labor — to 
provide for a division of work — to require security and 
safety, and to put more laborers in the field. "^^^ 


In his second biennial message on January 12, 1864, Gov- 
ernor Kirkwood characterized the sanitary work as being 

171 Burlington WeeTcly Argus, November 26, 1863. 

172 Duhuquc Semi-Weelcly Times, December 4, 1863. 


well arranged and systematized and consequently nrncli 
more effective than before. The Governor was convinced 
that the work could be done much better by the Aid Societies 
than by the State and recommended that it be left in their 
hands. The State should, he advised, make a liberal appro- 
priation for a contingent fund, to be at the disposal of the 
Governor for use in emergencies to aid the societies in car- 
ing for the sick and wounded and to send agents of the State 
whenever necessary for the comfort and well-being of the 

The first meeting of the board of control of the Iowa Sani- 
tary Commission was held early in December, 1863. At 
this time Mr. Kynett formally delivered to the new society 
all books and papers of the Army Sanitary Commission and 
the balance of their funds — about $800. Mrs. Wittenmyer 
also, in a letter to the president of the new Commission, 
relinquished all claims to the organization which she had 
represented and turned over all her facilities for shipping 
and conducting relief work. She likewise expressed her 
desire to cooperate with the Iowa Sanitary Commission in 
the endeavor to unite all the relief agencies of the State.^"^^ 

Provision was made for the establishment of depots, one 
at Chicago in connection with the United States Sanitary 
Commission, and one at St. Louis in connection with the 
Western Sanitary Commission, where the stores from Iowa 
could be received, repacked, and prepared for the field, and 
marked with the Iowa mark in order that, as far as possible, 
they could be turned over to Iowa regiments. The people 
sending donations were requested to put their names, marks, 
or mottoes upon the goods so that those receiving them 

173 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 349. 

'^T^Beyort of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 28, 31; Muscatine 
WeeUy Journal, December 11, 1863. 


would have the satisfaction of knowing that they were using 
goods from their own State and often from their own 
friends. Each local aid society was to decide for itself to 
which of these two depots its contributions should be sent.^^^ 
Articles of incorporation were drawn up and adopted at 
this first meeting of the board of control, and the headquar- 
ters were located at Davenport. The objects of the new 
organization were stated as follows : 

The general business of the association shall be to furnish aid, 
assistance, and comfort to sick, wounded, and suffering soldiers, 
and this both within and beyond the State. The particular objects 
and business of this Association shall be to stimulate and encourage, 
by the organization of voluntary societies and otherwise, the people 
of the State of Iowa to contribute money and sanitary supplies for 
the use and purpose aforesaid; to gather these together and dis- 
tribute them in such mode as the Board of Control . . . . 
shall, from time to time direct and authorize, but until these arti- 
cles are altered this Commission or Association shall co-operate, as 
far as practicable, with the United States and Western Sanitary 

The State was divided into districts and Rev. E. S. 
Norris, Mrs. M. J. Hager, and Mrs. C. W. Simmons were 
named as agents to canvass the State in behalf of the new 
organization. Mr. Norris and Mrs. Hager served without 
expense to the Commission being paid from the funds of 
the United States Sanitary Commission. The army was 
also divided into four departments and the board of control 
or the general agent, acting with the Governor, were author- 
ized to appoint agents for each department. Memorials 
were presented to the General Assembly asking for an 
appropriation to cover the expenses of the Commission, in- 

175 Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 28; The State Press 
(Towa City), December 23, 1863; Muscatine Weekly Journal, December 11, 

176 Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 29, 30. 



eluding the expenses of the agents, and also for a fund to 
be placed at the disposal of the Governor to be drawn upon 
in cases of emergency.^ 

In order to acquaint the public with the new arrangement 
N. H. Brainerd and James Wright were appointed at this 
meeting to issue an explanatory statement to the various 
local societies. When issued, this statement pointed out 
that the operation of the organization rested in the hands of 
the executive committee. Eev. E. Skinner, the correspond- 
ing secretary, was the general agent. All agents of the 
State were made agents of the Commission and were to 
work with it, Mrs. Wittenmyer, however, being the only 
State agent in the field at the time. The desire of the Com- 
mission to serve the people is shown by the sentiment ex- 
pressed in this address, that if ^Hhe officers of the Commis- 
sion do not manage to your liking, you will soon have a 
chance to fill their places with others. The whole matter 
is in your hands and you can control it." Accompanying 
the address was an endorsement from Governor Kirkwood, 
in which he spoke of the good work which had been done. 
^'I know'', he wrote, ^'the supplies furnished are, in the 
main, faithfully applied. I know hundreds and thousands 
of precious lives have thus been saved, and a vast amount of 
suffering relieved. ''^^® 


Sanitary affairs in Iowa were undoubtedly better organ- 
ized at this time than they had been at any previous period. 
All efforts were united under a single head capable of pro- 

Eeport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 32, 33; Dubuque 
Semi-WeeTcly Times, December 11, 1863; Newberry's The V. S. Sanitary Com- 
mission in the Valley of the Mississippi, p. 240. 

"^^^ Muscatine WeeUy Journal, January 1, 1864; The State Press (Iowa 
City), December 23, 1863. 


viding an efficient working system. A letter to the Musca- 
tine Journal, however, indicates that there were still some 
people in the State who were not in sympathy with the ar- 
rangement. This letter referred to the Iowa Sanitary Com- 
mission as conceived in sin and brought forth in iniquity'^ 
and declared that the Commission was begging'' the legis- 
lature for $80,000, of which $13,000 was to pay the salaries 
of its agents and officers. The United States Sanitary Com- 
mission, the writer stated, distributed $100,000 worth of 
goods at a cost of $2,000, or on the whole at an expense of 
about two per cent.^^^ The new arrangement, however, 
soon resulted in increased activity. Many new societies 
were organized and organizations that had been dormant for 
some time again entered into the work with new vigor.^^^ 

A bill was passed by the House of Representatives in 
February, 1864, to take the place of the act of 1862, which 
had authorized the Governor to appoint two or more sani- 
tary agents, one of whom was to be Mrs Wittenmyer.^^^ 
Immediately remonstrances were sent to the Senate by peo- 
ple all over the State, objecting to the repeal of the earlier 
act and expressing confidence in Mrs. Wittenmyer. Peti- 
tions of such a nature were introduced into the Senate 
from the citizens of Burlington, Muscatine, Mt. Pleasant, 
and Henry County. The petition which was circulated in 
Muscatine received over three hundred signatures, only one 
person having refused to sign it. Partly as a result of these 
petitions the bill was indefinitely postponed by the Senate.^^^ 
The Muscatine Journal in commenting upon the movement 
stated that the only opposition Mrs. Wittenmyer had ever 
encountered was ^^at the hands of a petty, despicable clique, 

170 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, February 19, 1864. 

180 Dubuque SemiWeeTcly Times, March 4, 1864, 

181 Senate Journal, 1864, p. 358. 

182 Senate Journal, 1864, pp. 398, 402, 416, 437. 


who have private ends to serve, and not the good of the 
service in view. '^^^^ A later issue declared that the opposi- 
tion to Mrs. Wittenmyer originated in a heartless politi- 
cal scheme, and has ever since been carried on by its origi- 
nators with the heartlessness characteristical of political 
schemers. By which we do not mean to say that all who 
oppose Mrs. W. are political schemers. We refer only 
to the heart-diseased, don't-expect-to-live-long *anti- Wit- 
tenmyer' set."^** 

The second annual meeting of the Iowa Sanitary Commis- 
sion was held at Des Moines on June 1, 1864. Mr. F. E. 
Bissell of Dubuque became president ; Mrs. James Baker of 
Davenport, recording secretary ; Ezekiel Clark of Iowa City 
was reelected treasurer ; and Eev. E. S. Norris of Dubuque 
was made corresponding secretary and general agent. A 
resolution was passed at this meeting asking that all sup- 
plies be sent to the United States Sanitary Commission 
at Chicago. The reasons given were that the Western Sani- 
tary Commission did not reach all the Iowa soldiers and 
the Christian Commission was designed to attend par- 
ticularly to the spiritual needs of the men, while the United 
States Sanitary Commission possessed superior facilities 
and operated in every part of he country.^ 

The first meeting of the board of control of the Commis- 
j sion for 1864 was held at Dubuque on June 22-24, during 
I the progress of the Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair at that 
place. The officers of the local aid societies who were at 
the Fair attended the meeting of the board in large numbers, 
i Mrs. D. P. Livermore of Chicago, representing the United 
States Sanitary Commission was present and told of the 
I condition and sufferings of the Iowa troops, and explained 

183 Muscatine WeeTdy Journal, March 4, 1864. 
j '^^^ Muscatine WeeMy Journal, March 11, 1864. 
I 185 Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 33, 34, 


the working of the Commission which she represented. The 
chief object of the meeting was to arouse an interest among 
the visitors at the Fair; and according to the report ^^all 
present were inspired with renewed determination to work 
with increased zeaV\^^^ 

Mrs. Wittenmyer had proposed the establishment of a 
special diet kitchen service for the benefit of those patients 
in need of special food which could not be obtained from 
the regular army allowances; and early in 1864 she laid 
her plan before the United States Christian Commission, 
by which body it was accepted after having been commended 
by the medical authorities of the army. The Christian 
Commission decided to put the plan into operation in its 
western branches, and agents were authorized to carry it 
out under the direction of Mrs. Wittenmyer. In June, 
therefore, Mrs. Wittenmyer resigned her place as State 
agent for Iowa in order to take up her new work with the 
Christian Commission, which she considered to be a field 
of much greater service.^ 

With her resignation Mrs. Wittenmyer gave an account 
of her activities as State agent since September, 1862. This 
report showed that she had received from the Aid Socie- 
ties of the State 2723 packages, barrels, and boxes of sani- 
tary stores. The Des Moines convention estimated the 
average value of these packages to be forty dollars, thus 
making $108,920 the estimated total value of the stores 
which Mrs. Wittenmyer distributed. This amount added to 
the cash received made a total of $115,876.93 for the work 
which she had performed. She estimated that this sum 
included nearly five-sixths of all the supplies furnished | 

186 Beport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 34. 

^fiT Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 33; Third Annual Be- ! 

port of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, p. 24; Muscatine Weekly j 

Journal, June 3, 1864. See above Chapter II. | 


by the people of Iowa during that period. At the time of 
her resignation Mrs. Wittenmyer reported the condition 
of the local Aid Societies to be very flourishing financially, 
many of them having from two to four hundred dollars in 
their treasuries.^ ^® 

The reports of the officers of the Iowa Sanitary Com- 
mission made at the meeting of the board of control on 
September 29, 1864, at Burlington, showed that the relief 
work carried on by the people of the State was greater than 
ever before. From March 1 to September 1, 1864, the 
United States Sanitary Commission at Chicago had re- 
ceived from Iowa 2059 packages, which was 474 more than 
were furnished by the whole State of Illinois. During the 
same period of six months the Chicago branch received 
in cash a total of $61,788.06, of which Iowa furnished $43,- 
920.15, while Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota 
combined furnished only $17,788. At the next meeting 
of the board held at Cedar Eapids on March 27, 1865, 
there was given a report for the year from March 1, 1864, 
to March 1, 1865, which revealed the fact that the Chicago 
branch during that year had received 3340 packages from 
Iowa. For the same period Minnesota had contributed 
210; Wisconsin 3165; Illinois 3918; and Michigan 1457 
packages. The cash receipts from Iowa had been $50,- 
935.85 ; while $38,931.64 had been the total amount received 
1 from Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan.^ 
I In April 1865, Mr. Norris reported that between seven 
j and eight tons of sanitary goods were stored along the 
i Dubuque and Sioux City Railroad and the Dubuque South- 
I western Railroad ready to be shipped. The interest 
I throughout the State was very great, between sixty and 

188 Senate Journal, 1864, pp. 197, 206. 
1^ 189 Beport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 35. 


VOL. XVI 16 


seventy county agents, appointed by Mr. Norris, being 
engaged in a canvas of their various counties.^^^ 

A branch of the United States Christian Commission had 
been established in Dubuque towards the close of 1864. 
It was an auxiliary of the Chicago branch of the Chris- 
tian Commission and was in charge of John H. Thomp- 
son. A meeting was held by the members at Dubuque in 
March, 1865, and delegates were appointed to visit sur- 
rounding towns to solicit contributions and organize local 
committees to supervise their respective districts.^^^ An- 
other auxiliary of the Christian Commission was located at 
Keokuk, with Col. William Thompson as president and 
treasurer, this organization being connected with the St. 
Louis branch of the Commission.^^^ Many supplies sent 
from Iowa during the closing months of the war were de- 
livered by the Christian Commission. The Third Annual 
Report of the Christian Commission acknowledged ^'valu- 
able and timely donations'' from Keokuk, Davenport, Os- 
kaloosa, Camanche, and ''other places in Iowa, of noble- 
hearted, liberal people''. Southern and central Iowa con- 
tributed more than one-half of the entire funds and stores 
of the St. Louis branch of the Christian Commission for 
the year 1864.^^^ 

On Wednesday, June 7, 1865, the Iowa Sanitary Commis- 
sion met for its third annual meeting at Des Moines. The 
war was over, however, and all that remained to be done 
was to wind up the affairs of the organization. Resolu- 
tions were adopted recommending that the local societies 

190 Dubuque Semi-W eeldy Times, April 28, 1865. 

191 Dubuque Semi-WeeTcly Times, November 15, 1864, March 31, 1865. 

192 Third Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
p. X. 

193 Third Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
pp. 94, 95. 



which had so well supported the relief work should now give 
their support to the Orphans' Asylum; and the existing 
officers were reelected.^^^ 

No report was ever made covering the work for the whole 
State during the full period of the war, and it would prob- 
ably have been impossible to do so, as supplies were dis- 
tributed through so many different agencies. The reports 
published by the different agents and commissions often 
contained duplications in that they listed the same supplies 
and funds, so that it would be impossible to estimate or 
place any total money value upon the contributions of the 
people of Iowa. The reports covering specific periods, how- 
ever, are sufficient to furnish an idea of the great magni- 
tude which the relief work attained. One writer says that 
every Iowa town ^*had its Soldiers' Aid Society, or later 
its local branch of the state sanitary commission, and the 
value and blessed use of the sanitary and hospital supplies 
sent to the front by them was almost beyond computation'' ; 
while another historian declares that in almost every town 
and county throughout the State the women of Iowa ear- 
nestly cooperated in this humane work. . . . The aid thus 
given to the soldiers in the field was estimated to amount 
to more than half a million dollars. "^^^ 



Encouraged by the success of the so-called sanitary 
fairs" in many other States, people in various parts of 
Iowa, early in 1864, conceived the idea of raising money 

19* Report of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, pp. 35, 36. 
i95Byers's Iowa in War Times, p. 456; Gue's History of Iowa, Vol. II, p. 


by similar means in this State. The movement soon took 
definite shape and in the course of the year three very 
snccessfnl fairs were held. 


A public meeting was h^ld in Dubuque in January, 1864, 
to consider the advisability of holding a large and extensive 
festival of some sort on Washing-ton's Birthday to raise 
the money and supplies so badly needed at that time for the 
army. It was proposed that the Ladies Soldiers' Aid 
Society should arrange for the affair, but as the members 
of that organization felt that they had all they could attend 
to, the matter was dropped temporarily.^^^ 

The proposal was revived a few months later and plans 
were laid for holding a large mass meeting to discuss the 
proposition. This meeting was held on March 10th in the 
Congregational church, which was well filled with the peo- 
ple of Dubuque. Mrs. D. P. Livermore of Chicago, a rep- 
resentative of the L^nited States Sanitary Commission, was 
present and ''for two hours addressed the meeting elegantly 
and eloquently". At the conclusion of her address it was 
decided to undertake the holding of a fair in Dubuque ; and 
a committee of sixteen, composed of an equal number of men 
and women, was appointed to draw up plans for an organi- 
zation and to select officers. A resolution was also adopted 
providing that a subscription should be taken at the meet- 
ing, and that the proceeds should be used for the immediate 
purchase of vegetables for the armies. The sum of eleven 
hundred dollars in cash was secured, a large part of which 
was used to purchase sauer kraut for the troops.^^" 

i»6 Dwbwgwe Semi-Weelly Times, .January 15. 19, 1864; The Xorihern Iowa 
Sanitary Fair, p. 3. This pamphlet contains a list of donations to the Fair, 
the treasurer's report, and a brief sketch of the Fair. It was published in 
Dubuque in 1864, 

-i^T Dubuque Semi-Weel-ly Times, March 15, 18, 1S64; The Xorthern Iowa 
Sanitary Fair, pp. 3, 4, 63. 


Two days later the committee made its report. The or- 
ganization was designated the Northern Iowa Sanitary 
Fair, and Mr. H. A. Wiltse was named as its president. 
Three vice presidents, five secretaries, a treasurer, and an 
executive committee of ten were also appointed. In 
addition, the plan provided that the presidents of organ- 
izations which might be formed in the various counties of 
the State for the purpose of cooperating in the enterprise 
should be vice presidents of the Fair. This plan ultimately 
resulted in the selection of thirty-four men and women, 
from as many different counties, as vice presidents. 

Work was immediately begun to arrange for the large 
undertaking. An appeal was sent out to the people of the 
State urging their assistance and cooperation. Contribu- 
tions of cash, of vegetables, of sanitary supplies, and of 
articles for sale at the Fair were solicited.^^^ Persons 
representing the Fair visited counties throughout the State, 
urging the cooperation of the public and of all relief organi- 
zations. Mr. Norris, an agent of the Iowa Sanitary Com- 
mission, spent the month previous to the Fair in traveling 
over the State, for the purpose of arousing popular inter- 
est and assistance. It was his hope that the results of the 
Fair should not be measured by the amount of money that 
would be raised, since he believed the Fair would be 
I instrumental in reviving an interest and activity in the re- 

I lief work of the whole State.^^^ Appeals for contributions 

II were not limited to Iowa. With a view to making the affair 
I as large and profitable as possible, people throughout the 
k loyal States were asked to help. 

As plans and work progressed the citizens entered more 

I 198 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, p. 4. 

j Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, March 18, 1864. 

I 200 The Sanitary Commission Bulletin, Vol. I, No. 19, 1864, pp. 577, 578; 

j. Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, April 29, 1864. 


fully into the spirit of the Fair and each was desirous of 
doing his part. The reports of agents and letters from 
numerous counties showed that practically the whole State 
was interested in the success of the undertaking. Governor 
William M. Stone was active, and early in April he wrote 
to the managers of the Fair that ' ^ nothing short of sickness 
or unavoidable business engagements'' would keep him 
from attendance.^^^ At a meeting of the executive commit- 
tee on May 3rd ' ^ communications from nearly every county 
in the State were read."^^^ Originally it had been planned 
to hold the Fair in the City Building and Turner Hall, but 
because of the proportions the enterprise was assuming, 
the promoters soon realized that these buildings would not 
be sufficient. Therefore, in order to give time for the con- 
struction of an additional building to house the machinery 
and implements, the date of the opening of the Fair, which 
had been set for May 24th, was postponed to June 21st.^*^^ 

Agreements were early reached with various transporta- 
tion companies for transporting goods for the Fair free of 
charge. Twenty-four different railroads and the North- 
western Packet Company agreed to haul all goods free, 
while the American Express Company promised to carry 
free all packages weighing under thirty pounds and all pack- 
ages above that weight at cost.^^^ In May a committee on 

Labor, Incomes and Revenue'' was appointed and instruc- 
ted ^'to solicit a day's labor or its earnings, or a day's 
income from each individual in the State, also a day's 
revenue from all employing establishments, firms, corpora- 
tions and companies ".^^^ In response to the untiring ef- 

201 Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, April 8, 1864. 

202 Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, May 6, 1864. 

^oz Dubuque Semi-WeeTdy Times, April 29, 1864; The Northern Iowa Sani- 
tary Fair, p. 6. 

204 Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, April 26, 1864. 
2or, Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, May 10, 1864. 



forts of the workers, supplies and donations early began to 
pour in, and long before the opening day of the big event 
had arrived, hospital goods valued at twenty-five thousand 
dollars had been received and shipped to the men in the 

At two o'clock on June 21st the Fair was thrown open to 
the public, there being no procession or public display to 
mark the opening. ^^The officers and committees assembled 
in the Fancy Department shortly before the hour for public 
opening. The Germania Band performed *Hail Columbia.' 
Eev. D. M. Reed addressed the Throne of Grace in a fervent 
prayer. The President of the Fair, on behalf of the man- 
agers, in a brief address, turned over the donations to the 
committees, and this address was responded to in a few well 
chosen remarks, by W. L. Calkins, Esq., of McGregor, on the 
part of the committees. ''^^^ Two dollars was the price of a 
season ticket good for a lady and gentleman ; single season 
tickets sold for a dollar and a half ; admission for a single 
day was fifty cents ; and children under twelve years of age 
were admitted at one-half the regular rate.^^* 

The first floor of the City Hall was occupied by booths, 
where every county that so desired was represented. Four- 
teen Iowa counties occupied separate booths; Jo Daviess 
County in Illinois and Grant County in Wisconsin shared 
one booth; the Good Templars conducted four booths, the 
City of Dubuque seven, the Catholic ladies of Dubuque two, 
and the German ladies of Dubuque two. Contributions from 
other localities were distributed among and sold at the dif- 
ferent booths.^^^ The library and floral departments, the 

206 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, p. 8. 

207 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, pp. 5, 6 ; Dubuque Semi-WeeTcly Times, 
June 21, 24, 1864. 

^o^Duluque Semi-WeeJcly Times, June 21, 1864. 
209 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, p. 8. 


packing room, the appraisers ' room, and the officers ' head- 
quarters were located on the second floor of the City Hall ; 
the third floor housed the children's amusement depart- 
ment; and the basement served as a store room. The first 
and second stories of Turner Hall were used for the refresh- 
ment department, with sitting rooms and lounging rooms on 
the ground floor and dining room and kitchen above. ' ' Both 
buildings were ornamented with American flags, with ever- 
greens, flowers, mottoes and pictures in profusion and with 
the highest effect." The building which had been con- 
structed especially for the occasion adjoined the City Hall, 
and was filled with hardware and agricultural and house- 
hold implements and machinery ".^^^ 

The Fair continued for eight days, the doors being open 
from ten o 'clock in the morning to ten o 'clock at night. As 
many as twenty-five hundred people were present at a sin- 
gle time. In the evenings special entertainments were 
given, consisting of ^ ' Tableaux, Pantomines, and the drama 
of Cinderella at Turner Hall ; two dramatic entertainments 
at Julien Theatre, of a choice character, by an amateur 
company of ladies and gentlemen from Madison, Wisconsin, 
under the management of Jas. L. Stafford, Esq., given 
entirely at their own expense; two concerts by Prof. Las- 
celles, and a lecture by Mark M. Pomeroy, Esq., also at 
Julien Theatre. "211 

In order to stimulate interest in the Fair a national flag 
was offered as a prize to the county, outside of Dubuque 
County, making the largest contribution to the Fair in pro- 
portion to its population.^i^ About the middle of May, over 
a month before the opening of the Fair, the vice president 

210 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, pp. 5, 6. 

211 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, pp. 8, 9; Dubuque Semi-Weeldy Times, 
June 28, 1864. 

^'^^ Dubuque Semi-Weekly Times, April 12, 1864. 



of Kossuth County stated in a letter to the president of the 
Fair that Kossuth County was ^ Agoing to get that flag" or 
make some of the other counties ''pile it up big."^^^ When 
the Fair opened Kossuth County, in addition to a valuable 
collection of goods, had contributed more than a dollar for 
every man, woman, and child in the County.^^^ This amount 
proved to be sufficient to win the contest and the prize flag 
is to be found to-day in the care of the Kossuth County His- 
torical Society.^^^ 

The aim of the promoters of the Fair had been to obtain 
a response from as many people and from as many parts of 
Iowa as possible, thus making the enterprise a state-wide 
movement. That this aim was realized is shown by the fact 
that donations were received from about three hundred 
Iowa towns and cities, in sixty-two different counties. 
These donations were in a large part composed of supplies 
such as vegetables and other foods, clothing, and hospital 
stores, that could be used directly for the benefit of the sol- 
diers in camps and hospitals ; but among the contributions 
there was also a great quantity and a great variety of arti- 
cles to be sold at the Fair.-^^ 

Heading the list of such articles was one "silk quilt, by 
eight young ladies'' from Allamakee County, representing, 
as did numerous gifts of fancy-work and art, the handiwork 
of the women of the State. Even the unfortunate inmates 
of the Asylum for the Blind at Vinton responded to the ap- 
peal with a contribution of fancy bead work. From Du- 
buque County, where of course the interest in the Fair was 
greatest, came such a variety of articles as a piano, a can- 
non, an opera cloak, a harness, five boxes of toilet soap, a 

213 Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, May 17, 1864. 
^'^4: Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, June 21, 1864, 

2i5Eeed's Our Historic Flag in the Algona Courier, December 13, 1917. 
216 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, pp. 10-37. 


fancy dress ball, revolving figures", a saddle, one garden 
vase, forty-five Mexican dollars, two transparencies ' ^, 
bread baskets, specimens of minerals, an ottoman, one 

Daughter of the Eegimenf, and a sketch entitled the 

Bathing Scene''. 

A fine silver set which sold for five hundred dollars was 
received from the ladies of Keokuk; and a less expensive 
set was received from Burlington. The people of Clinton 
County forwarded, among other things, one pump and a 
quantity of sheet music; while from Linn County came two 
pumps, two pieces of pump pipe, and two lightning rods. A 
shirt and a clothes-wringer formed part of Mt. Pleasant 's 
donation, and citizens of Webster City responded with 
three dollars worth of ^'French chalk'' and some specimens 
of Colorado gold quartz. Waterloo was very ably repre- 
sented by such gifts as a ^ ^ case of birds ' ', two town lots, and 
a whatnot valued at forty dollars. Perhaps one of the most 
novel and striking gifts of all, certainly one of the most en- 
livening to those coming in contact with it, was that received 
from a citizen of Clayton County — a hive of bees.^^^ 

Iowa, however, was not the only source from which aid 
flowed to the Fair. From all over the country came large 
donations of money and goods. Cash received from Chi- 
cago amounted to $3508, from New York City came a total 
of $3165, from Boston $2735, and from Milwaukee $1,262.16, 
besides many smaller subscriptions from numerous other 
places. The articles from the country at large, contributed 
for sale at the Fair, like those from various parts of this 
State, included goods of all degrees of value and usefulness. 
Farm machinery proved a popular gift, and a great variety, 
such as reapers, mowers, hay rakes, plows, fanning mills, a 
sugar cane mill, buggies, and a cutter came from several 

217 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, pp. 10-37. 


districts. Other individuals or communities sent household 
equipment, including sewing machines, washing machines, 
furniture, clothes dryers, a cook stove, a tea urn, and a 
clock. Citizens of Pennsylvania, as their contribution, for- 


warded clothing, copper bottomed and brass kettles, glass, 
two gross of ^ S^ermif uge and a steel cannon. From a 
regiment in Texas came carved work, a blanket, a scarf, 
shells, boots, slippers, and a Mexican saddle. Connecticut's 
offerings included skates, patent garters, hoop skirts, and 
door knobs. Massachusetts added five carriage robes, head 

J dresses, one school melodeon, part values on a piano and 
organ, ^^two gross bronchial troches", and an afghan. 
Among the receipts from New York were twenty pounds of 
black tea, a camp stool, a dozen razors, twenty bunches of 
rope, two boxes of tin, one baby tender, pocket companions, 
cologne bottles, one self-operating swing, a tent, one spring 

j rocking horse, six cistern pumps, a box of artificial flowers, 
six boxes of Green", and two dozen bottles of ^^psycho- 
gogue ' A guitar, two barrels of crackers, * * one tidy, by a 
lady seventy years old", one mineral grotto, and six very 
old coppers helped to make up the contribution from Wis- 

' consin.2^^ 

Soon after the Fair was organized the executive com- 
mittee passed a resolution to prohibit the disposition of 
f goods at the Fair by raffling or selling chances.^^^ Appar- 
I ently the rule was not enforced, and as a result the president 
I and managers were severely criticized. A religious news- 
j paper published in Dubuque at the time, although chron- 
icling the success of the Fair from a financial point of view, 
considered it a ''moral failure". Many ministers had 
I worked and served as agents for the Fair with the under- 

218 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, pp. 38-44, 51, 52, 61, 62, 64. 
^^^Buhuque Semi-WeeTcly Times, March 15, 1864. 


standing that the resolution against raffling would be en- 
forced and they would not have backed the project under 
any other conditions. ^'In the face of all this,'' declared 
the editor, ^Hhe President of the Fair had scarcely con- 
cluded his excellent and eloquent opening address, before 
the sale of lottery-tickets was begun, and during the whole 
of the seven days that the Fair continued, one could not 
spend five minutes in any portion of the vast building de- 
voted to it, without being beset and besought by men, women 
and children, to ^take a chance,' ^try your luck,' ^buy a 
ticket,' and so on ad nauseam, until his ears were fairly 
made to ring with the whole vocabulary of a regular lottery 
office. "220 

Numerous contests were arranged to increase the interest 
of those attending the Fair. An opera cloak was presented 
by Mrs. H. A. Wiltse to be donated to either Mrs. Grant, 
Mrs. Fremont, or Mrs. McClellan, as the people decided. 
Votes were sold at fifty cents and patrons were urged to 
vote early and often. "^^^ A St. Louis firm donated a 
^^magnificent regimental flag" to go to the regiment receiv- 
ing the highest number of votes at the Fair. The votes sold 
at fifty cents each^^^ and on the last evening, as the time for 
closing the polls drew near the contest grew very exciting. 
The Fifth Iowa Cavalry was at first declared to be the win- 
ner, but a recount gave the flag to the Ninth Iowa Infantry 
by a single vote.^^^ 

By the time the Fair closed the total receipts had almost 
reached ninety thousand dollars, and many goods still re- 
mained unsold. Such materials as could be converted into 
hospital clothing were turned over to the Soldiers' Aid So- 

Iowa Eelirjious News-Lctter (Dubuque), July, 1864. 

221 Dubuque Scmi-Weclcly Times, Juiie 24, 1864. 

222 Duhuque Semi-W eeldy Times, .Tune 21, 1864. 
22.-5 Duhwjue Scmi-WeeJdy Times, July 1, 1864. 



ciety of Dubuque. Many other things were given to the 
sanitary fairs at Rockford and Warren, Illinois, and to sim- 
ilar enterprises at Marshalltown and Burlington, Iowa. 
When the final report was made by the managers a few 
articles still remained undisposed of, among which were 
^'an embroidered chair, a gold watch, a hive of bees, two 

town lots and one hundred and twenty acres of farming 
land. ''224 

The proceeds of the Fair had, upon its organization, been 
pledged to the United States Sanitary Commission,^^^ and 
besides the supplies forwarded to this Commission as a re- 
sult of the Fair nearly $50,000 in cash was added to its 

i funds. About $1500 of the proceeds of the Fair was spent 
by the management for vegetables; the sum of $250 was 

I given to the Soldiers ' Home in Dubuque ; and between $7000 
and $8000 was spent in maintaining agents, in fitting up the 
buildings, in buying goods, and in defraying advertising 
and operating expenses. 

Compared with the other sanitary fairs held throughout 
the country the Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair made a favor- 

I able showing. It was pointed out by the Dubuque Times 
that the contributions per inhabitant of Dubuque County 
averaged $2.88, which was higher than a similar average for 
any of the larger fairs. St. Louis was next to Dubuque 
with an average of $2.75, after which came Philadelphia 
County with $2.10 per inhabitant of the county ; but all other 
communities fell below two dollars. In total receipts the 
Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair equaled the fair held in Chi- 

! cago in October, 1863.^2'^ While many of the larger fairs 

224 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, p. 6. 

225 The Sanitary Commission Bulletin, Vol. I, No. 19, 1864, p. 578 ; The 
Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, p. 23. 

226 The Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, p. 63 ; The Sanitary Commission Bul- 
letin, No. 26, 1864, pp. 824, 825. 

; 227 Dubuque Semi-WeeTcly Times, November 25, 1864. 


received large contributions, some running into many thou- 
sands of dollars, no cash subscriptions to the Dubuque Fair 
exceeded one hundred dollars. The success of the enter- 
prise was due to the wide-spread support which it received 
and the small gifts from a great number of persons. In 
some townships and counties almost every man, woman, and 
child gave something. In commenting upon the Fair a 
bulletin of the United States Sanitary Commission made 
the following statement : 

If the value of services were measured by the extent of the sacri- 
fice made in rendering them, it would probably be found that no 
State in the Union had done so much for the war as Iowa .... 
it is doubtful if there is on record any other so splendid example of 
the heroism, farsightedness, and self-abnegation with which free- 
dom long enjoyed, can gift a whole community .229 


Following the Northern Iowa Sanitary Fair, two addi- 
tional fairs of more than local importance were held in the 
State ; the Iowa Central Fair at Muscatine, held during the 
first week in September, 1864, and the Southern Iowa Fair 
at Burlington near the close of the same month.^^^ These 
fairs, although somewhat smaller, were conducted along 
similar lines and received enthusiastic support from their 
own communities. A list of the contributions to the South- 
ern Iowa Fair, according to townships, shows that Yellow 
Springs Township in Des Moines County, with a population 
of 1604, averaged $2.15 per capita; while Denmark Town- 
ship in Lee County, with 843 people, averaged $1.42.2^^ 

228 Dubuque Semi-WeeMy Times, November 25, 1864, 

229 The Sanitary Commission Bulletin, Vol. I, No. 19, 1864, pp. 577, 578. 

230 A fair was held at Marshalltown in August, 1865, but since the purpose 
of this fair was to raise money for the Soldiers' Orphans' Home it will be 
considered under that subject. 

231 Quoted from the Burlington Eawk-Eye in the Dubuque Semi-Weekly 
Times, October 21, 1864. 


The total receipts of the Burlington Fair were between 
$20,000 and $25,000, including $6000 worth of sanitary 
stores. These proceeds were donated partly to the United 
States Sanitary Commission, partly to the United States 
Christian Commission, and the remainder was expended 
under the supervision of the Burlington Soldiers' Aid So- 

I ciety.^^2 The Christian Commission received as its part 
$2500 in cash; forty barrels of onions, pickles, and dried 
apples ; nine boxes of clothing, linen, and bandages ; forty- 
nine boxes and kegs of canned fruit and apple butter; and 
several boxes of books.^^^ 

From the Iowa Central Fair about $20,000 was realized 
by the managers, the greatest share of which was turned 
over to the United States Christian Commission,^^^ which 
received $10,000 in cash; 1920 bushels of potatoes; 998 
bushels of onions; twenty barrels of crackers; twenty-two 

' barrels and kegs of pickles ; six barrels of flour ; eight boxes 

!i of clothing and linens ; and fifty boxes and four barrels of 

! canned, dried, and preserved fruit.^^^ 

I Politics seem to have entered somewhat into the Fair at 
I Muscatine, and at least one Democratic editor advised his 
I readers to send their contributions directly to the soldiers 
rather than to the Fair. The stand taken in this particular 
case was the result of a meeting held at Iowa City to arouse 
enthusiasm for the Fair. Mr. Henry O'Connor of Musca- 
tine addressed the meeting which, according to the Iowa 
State Press, was turned "mio an abolition love feast". 
O'Connor's address, as ^^long as he confined himself to the 

Beport of the Iowa Sanitary Commission, 1866, p. 71; quotation from the 
Burlington EawTc-Eye in the Dubuque Semi-TV eelcly Times, October 21, 1864. 

233 Third Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
pp. 94, 95. 

234 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, September 23, 1864. 

235 Third Annual Beport of the United States Christian Commission, 1865, 
pp. 94, 95. 



object for which he professed to be speaking'', declared the 
editor, was ^'exceedingly dry and uninteresting; but when 
he branched off upon the negro, and alluded to the ven- 
geance which his party propose wreaking upon Democrats 
in the North, his dullness vanished, and all the malignity of 
his shallow soul flowed in a stream of dirty slang from his 
lips." Hence the advice which was given — ''don't drop a 
single dime into the maw of this abolition shark. "^^^ 



When the men from the North began to respond to the 
call to arms the people remaining at home were in many 
cases confronted with the problem of providing for the 
families of soldiers. All through the war it was necessary 
for many fathers and husbands to leave their homes with- 
out any adequate provision for the maintenance of those de- 
pendent upon them. There were three sources from which 
aid came to these families : from the State, from the county, 
and from private individuals and organizations.^^^ In some 
instances, as in Massachusetts^^* and North Carolina,^^^ 
money was appropriated directly by the State for the pur- 
pose. In many of the States county aid was given; while 
private help was no doubt given to some extent in every 

236 The Iowa State Press (Iowa City), August 10, 1864. 

237 Fite 's Social and Industrial Conditions in the North During the Civil 
War, p. 288. 

238 Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 4, 1861. 

230 Fisher's The Belief of Soldiers' Families in North Carolina During the 
Civil War in The South Atlantic Quarterly, January, 1917, pp. 60, 61, 62. 

240 Fite 's Social and Industrial Conditions in the North During the Civil War, 
p. 288. 



No aid was given to soldiers' families in Iowa directly 
from the funds of the State; provision for their care was 
left to the county boards of supervisors and to private 
agencies. Early in the war, however, there was some agi- 
tation for the use of State funds for this purpose. In his 
message to the special session of the legislature in 1861, 
Governor Kirkwood referred to the matter and stated his 
belief that, since troops would not come from all counties of 
the State nor would they be equally distributed among those 
counties which were drawn upon, it would be more equitable 
and just if the expense of caring for the families of the vol- 
unteers should be assumed by the State, and the burden 
thereby equally distributed among all the people.^ 

In the same message the Governor mentioned the fact that 
in ^'most or all of the counties in which companies of volun- 
teers have thus far been accepted, the Boards of Super- 
visors or public spirited citizens have raised means for the 
support of the families of volunteers who have left families 
dependent on them for support. "^^^ jt ^as necessary that 
such action of the supervisors should be sanctioned by the 
State legislature, and this was done by a law passed on 
May 27, 1861.2^^ At the same time a movement was started 
to enact a statute which would authorize the county boards, 
in the future, to give such relief. There was some opposi- 
tion to the bill which was introduced. A letter, written 
from Des Moines to the Muscatine Weekly J ournal, stated 
that it was unlikely that such a law would be enacted, be- 
cause so many of the counties of the State had no volunteer 

241 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 261. 

242 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
n, p. 261. 

243 Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, p. 3. 
VOL. XVI — 17 


companies, and hence the people did not appreciate the im- 
portance of such a provision.^*^ On May 29, 1861, however, 
a law was enacted giving power to the board of supervisors 
to make appropriations out of county funds for the support 
of families of volunteers who had been living in the State at 
the time of enlistment and whose residence was still in 

The subject of support for soldiers' families was again 
revived at the special legislative session in 1862, and more 
efficient provision for county aid was made. By an act of 
September 11th county supervisors were authorized to levy 
a special tax for the payment of bounties for enlistments, 
and for the support of families of persons in the military 
service of the State or the United States. Any previous 
taxes that had been levied for this purpose were also legal- 
ized by this act.^^^ 

Conditions, however, were not yet satisfactory to those 
interested in the work. At the formation of the Iowa Sani- 
tary Commission in November, 1863, a resolution was 
adopted asking the legislature to pass a law creating a gen- 
eral State fund for the relief of the destitute families of 
soldiers, to be distributed in proportion to the number of 
soldiers enlisted from each county. It was also recommend- 
ed that the law authorizing counties to levy taxes for that 
purpose be repealed.^^^ An address sent out by the Com- 
mission in December called attention to the fact that many 
soldiers' families all over the State were '4n want of the 
common necessaries of life." The Ladies' Aid Societies 
were urged to give the men at home no peace until they sup- 
plied them with the means necessary to relieve the suffer- 

244 Muscatine WecMy Journal, May 31, 1861. 

245 Zaws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1861, p. 31. 
^^^Laws of Iowa (Extra Session), 1862, pp. 37, 38, 39. 
247 Muscatine Weekly Journal, November 27, 1863. 


ing among soldiers' families. They were especially asked 
to urge the county supervisors to provide assistance.^^^ 

In his biennial message of January, 1864, Governor Kirk- 
wood again gave attention to the matter. He ^^very ear- 
nestly'' recommended that *^some systematic mode of fur- 
nishing aid to the needy families of our soldiers be 
adopted." Instead of advising State aid, as in his earlier 
message, he was undecided as to whether it was best for the 
State to furnish the money and appoint agents to distribute 
it, or to leave the matter to local aid societies.^ The action 
taken by the law-makers left the care of the families in the 
hands of county authorities, but strengthened the law by 
which it was accomplished. Previously the supervisors had 
had the power to levy taxes for the purpose, but a law of 
March, 1864, contained the provision that there shall be 
levied in each county not less than two (2) mills on the dol- 
lar, in the years 1864 and 1865," for the relief of the fami- 
lies of privates and non-commissioned officers and musicians 
who have heretofore been, now are, or may hereafter be in 
the military or naval service of the United States from this 
State". Thus the assessment of the tax was made compul- 
sory instead of being left to the choice of the authorities of 
each particular county .^^^ 


The total amounts paid out by the counties of the State 
during the Civil War, according to reports made to the 
State Auditor, were $1,083,901.34 for bounties and $1,122,- 
247.76 for the relief of soldiers' families. In 1861, the first 
year of the war, Johnson County, where a total of $3,384.36 

248 T^e state Press (Iowa Citj), December 23, 1863. 

249 Shambaugh 's Messages and Froclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 349, 350. 

250 Laws of Iowa, 1864, pp. 99, 100, 101. 


was appropriated, was the only county reporting the use of 
any public funds for relief purposes. The reports, however, 
could not have been complete, as the supervisors of Musca- 
tine County on June 12, 1861, appropriated $2000 for the 
support of the families of volunteers.^^^ In 1862 and 1863 
no expenditures for relief were reported by any of the coun- 
ties, although in some instances money which had been so 
spent was included in the funds used for bounties, which 
for the two years amounted to $461,179.47. The amount 
devoted to relief work in 1864 was $604,607.78; in 1865 it 
was $487,863.16; and in 1866 it amounted to $26,392.46.2^2 



That there was much left for private charity to do is a 
matter of little doubt. Perhaps the best idea of the part 
played by private individuals and organizations can be se- 
cured by a study of the activities which were carried on by 
certain communities of the State, and which are representa- 
tive of private relief work in the State as a whole. These 
instances illustrate the fact that in addition to the great 
amount of sanitary work which was carried on all over the 
State, the people of Iowa also did much to relieve the dis- 
tress and suffering at home. 

In Muscatine, at the first mass meeting which was held to 
secure volunteers for the army, a relief committee of citi- 
zens was appointed to adopt measures to the end that the 
families of any men who might volunteer should not suffer 
in their absence.^^^ This was in April, 1861, and a few days 
later a notice was inserted in the newspapers stating that 
the families of any volunteers who desired or needed as- 

^!'>i Muscatine Weeldy Journal, June 14, 1861. 

2'i2 Pollock State Finances During the Civil War in The Iowa Journal of 
History and Politics, Vol. XVI, p. 88. 

253 Muscatine Weeldy Journal, April 19, 1861. 


sistance, or even cared to have some member of the relief 
committee call, should send their names and addresses to 
one of the members.^^^ 

A little later, on June 12th, the county board of super- 
visors took action and appropriated $2000 for the support 
of volunteers' families, to be distributed in the following 
manner. The clerk of the board of supervisors was to pay 
out warrants whenever he was presented with a certificate, 
signed by the secretary and chairman of the citizens ' relief 
committee, stating that the bearer was a member of the 
family of one of the volunteers, and indicating the amount 
to which the bearer was entitled. Of the amount appropri- 
ated, $880 was to be used to meet obligations which the com- 
mittee had already contracted.^^^ A statement issued two 
weeks later indicated that the committee was caring for be- 
tween forty and fifty families, which were receiving allow- 
ances of from one dollar and a half to four dollars per week, 
the amount being based upon the written statements made 
by each volunteer before he left.^^^ On September 4th the 
supervisors ordered $341.42 to be paid to cover additional 
I claims of the relief committee.^^^ During the following 
! year, at a special meeting of the board of supervisors, an- 
other appropriation was made for the support of the sol- 
diers' dependents.^^^ 

Cooperation with the county officers in distributing coun- 
ty funds was not, however, the only part played in Musca- 
I tine by the benevolent public. The Relief Society of the 
! first and second wards was organized early in December, 
j 1861, for the purpose of caring for the families of volun- 

254 Muscatine Weelcly Journal, April 26, 1861. 

255 Muscatine Weelcly Journal, June 14, 1861. 

1^56 Muscatine Weelcly Journal, June 28, 1861. 
Muscatine Weelcly Journal, September 6, 1861. 
258 Muscatine Weelcly Journal, August 15, 1862. 


teers. The third ward Relief Society was organized at 
about the same time and a committee was appointed to 
ascertain where relief was needed in the district and report 
to a soliciting committee.^ The Union Benevolent Society 
decided in April, 1862, to meet once a week and sew for the 
needy people of the community, and all the ladies of the 
city were invited to attend.^^^ The report of this society 
for the winter of 1862 and 1863 stated that it had raised 
the sum of $258.18, which had been used to furnish wood, 
flour, and other necessities to the families of fifty soldiers. 
Of this amount eighty-five dollars went for wood, seventy- 
five dollars for flour, and the balance for groceries, clothing, 
and medicines. The funds of the society, according to the 
report, were at that time exhausted, and unless assistance 
was given soon many families would suffer.^^^ 

In November, 1863, the Muscatine WeeMy Journal pub- 
lished an appeal for assistance for many needy families in 
the community. Because of the high cost of fuel and other 
necessities, the article pointed out, it was impossible for 
many families to supply their wants for the winter, which 
promised to be very severe : there were at least one hundred 
families who needed help and must have fuel and food. 
The writer proposed that a public meeting be held at once 
to appoint committees in each township to visit everyone in 
their neighborhood and secure contributions of wood, flour, 
meat, vegetables, or anything that a family could use.^^^ 
Collections of money and provisions were taken in the 
Methodist and Congregational churches of Muscatine at 
Thanksgiving time, amounting to $175.95.^^^ 

259 Muscatine WeeMy Journal, December 13, 1861. 

Muscatine WeeJcly Journal, April 11, 1862. 
2fii Muscatine WeeMy Journal, February 20, 1863. 
^c>2 Muscatine WeeMy Journal, November 20, 1863. 
263 Muscatine WeeMy Journal, December 4, 1863. 


These various activities, it must be borne in mind, cover 
only short periods and are discussed merely to indicate the 
manner in which the work was carried on, and not as a 
summary of the work done. In addition to the organiza- 
tions mentioned, other agencies were in the field. All 
through the war the Muscatine Soldiers' Aid Society did 
much to mitigate the sufferings of the families of soldiers 
as well as to supply the needs of the soldiers themselves. 

In many instances and in a great variety of ways private 
individuals undertook to do something in behalf of those at 
home who were in need. Soon after the first soldiers de- 
parted from the State Dr. William Carus of Iowa City re- 
quested the press to announce that he would be glad to give 
medical attendance free of charge to the families of volun- 
teers during the war.^^'* At another time a notice appeared 
in an Iowa City paper announcing that Mr. Stonehouse had 
at his saloon on Clinton Street a barrel of corned beef which 
he would distribute gratis to the poor.^^'^ Dr. J. S. Horton 
of Muscatine offered to donate forty cords of wood, upon 
the condition that the men of the city would cut it and haul 
it to town.^'^^ An interesting instance of private benevo- 
lence occurred in Dubuque in October, 1864, when a score or 
more of needy families ^'were made happy and tenderly 
grateful" by visits from three unknown women. The women 
arrived with well-filled baskets, prepared a meal for the 
families, ate with them, and then departed, their identity 
remaining unknown. In each case a supply of food and 
other goods was left for future use, and in most instances a 
ten dollar bill was found after the visitors had departed.^^"^ 

In August, 1863, the Dubuque Aid Society was reported 

264 r7ie state Press (Iowa City), May 1, 1861. 
^Q5The State Press (Iowa City), January 27, 1864, 
zee Muscatine WeeTdy Journal, November 20, 1863. 
Dubuque Semi-W eeTcly Times, November 4, 1864. 


to be ^ * overwhelmed with calls for assistance At 
Christmas time of that year this society furnished basket 
dinners to more than forty families — the baskets contain- 
ing turkeys, chickens, geese, ducks, beef, apples, bread, 
cake, pies, and many additional delicacies which had been 
donated by citizens.^^^ According to a report of the society 
in March, 1864, it had during the previous four months 
spent $1100 for the relief of eighty families. Sixty of these 
families had received constant aid, and most of them were 
entirely dependent upon such support. The assistance had 
all been given in supplies and grocery orders and none of it 
in cash.^^*^ At Christmas the following year an appeal was 
again made to the people to furnish dinners for soldiers' 
families, as there were one hundred families that were 
badly in need of such gifts.^'^^ During the winter of 1864 
and 1865 the Dubuque Aid Society expended $1141.70 in 
caring for sixty-three needy families whose natural sup- 
porters had been called to war.^^^ 

Many other communities were likewise called upon to aid 
those who had been left in their midst without means of 
providing for themselves. In Keokuk near the close of the 
year 1863 there were between one hundred and fifty and 
two hundred families dependent in varying degrees upon 
the Ladies' Aid Society for their maintenance.^^^ About 
the same time the Burlington WeeMy Argus called public 
attention to the fact that there were many families in the 
community who should be remembered at Christmas, as 
there was much ''hunger, misery, sickness and want'' in 

208 Dubuque Semi-W eeTcly Times, September 1, 1863. 

209 Duhuque Semi-WeeJcly Times, December 29, 1863. 

270 Duhuque Semi-Weelcly Times, March 15, 1864. 

271 Duhuque Semi-WeeJdy Times, December 23, 1864. 

272 Duhuque Semi-Weelcly Times, May 23, 1865. 

The Weelcly Gate City (Keokuk), December 16, 1863. 



their midst.^'^^ For the year ending October 3, 1864, the 
Iowa City Soldiers' Aid Society distributed to families of 
soldiers goods valued at $747.84. The things given out in- 
cluded *^252 yards print, 676 yards muslin, 61 yards flannel, 
83 yards jeans, 21 lbs. yarn, 60 pair shoes, 16 socks and mit- 
tens, 6 comforts, 850 lbs. flour, 300 lbs. soap, groceries, 
wood, money; to.*'^"^^ 



As Mrs. Wittenmyer, in her sanitary work, labored 
among the soldiers in the hospitals and on the battlefields, 
she received constant appeals from dying soldiers to pro- 
vide in some way for their children. To meet this situation 
she conceived the idea of establishing, somewhere in the 
State, a home in which all such children could be cared for 
and educated. At a meeting of the Soldiers' Aid Society of 
Iowa City on September 23, 1863, which Mrs. Wittenmyer 
attended, the subject was brought up for discussion ^j^^ 
soon afterwards a convention of the Aid Societies of the 
State was arranged for October 5th, at Muscatine. It was 
at this meeting that the Iowa State Sanitary Commission^^'^ 
was organized ^^for the purpose of securing a large and 
constant supply of Sanitary goods, and a faithful applica- 
tion of the same, and for the purpose of building an Orphan 
Asylum. ''278 

One of the first steps taken in behalf of the movement was 

274: Burlington WeeJcly Argus, December 31, 1863. 
^75 The State Press (Iowa City), December 14, 1864. 

276 Downer's History of Davenport and Scott County, Iowa, Vol. I, p. 663. 

277 See Chapter V above. 

278 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, October 16, 1863, 


the issuance of an appeal to all the people of Iowa to re- 
member and aid the cause of the orphans upon Thanksgiv- 
ing Day. ^^Many of our mighty men'', read the appeal, 
^ ^ have fallen — many a brave, true heart has been pierced, 
and the little eyes at home have looked and wept for the 
soldier that shall never return. The windows are darkened, 
the hearthstone has lost its warmth, and the little bare feet 
must start out on life's thorny and perilous way, alone. . . 
. Let us, therefore, remember the orphan children of 
our soldiers, and offer to the Almighty Father on that day, 
a tribute of gratitude that will be well pleasing in His 
sight. ' ' Ministers were urged to present the cause in their 
pulpits on Thanksgiving Day, and it was suggested that 
Soldiers' Aid Societies, Good Templars, and all other 
benevolent organizations arrange public entertainments to 
raise money for the enterprise. ^'Land, town lots, stock in 
railroads, or other corporations, money, or anything that 
will bring money" were listed as acceptable gifts.^^^ 

When, late in November, the Iowa Sanitary Commission 
absorbed the Iowa State Sanitary Commission,^^^ it was 
deemed advisable to separate the orphans' home project 
from the sanitary work, and it was placed in the hands of 
leading men and women of the State who formed a new 
association which on December 30th was incorporated as 
the Iowa State Orphan Asylum.^^^ The officers of the new 

279 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, November 20, 1863. 

280 See Chapter VI above. 

281 Senate Journal, 1864, pp. 204, 205 ; Darwin 's History of the Iowa State 
Orphan Asylum in The Annals of Iowa (First Series), Vol. Ill, p. 453. The 
incorporators were Caleb Baldwin, George O. Wright, Ealph P. Lowe, Samuel 
J. Kirkwood, William M. Stone, J. W. Cattell, N. H. Brainerd, C. C. Cole, Oran 
Faville, John E. Needham, S. S. Doming, Mrs. Hancock, Mrs. Newcomb, Isaac 
Pendleton, Mrs. Stephens, James G. Day, Mrs. S. Bagg, Mrs. Cadle, H. C. 
Henderson, Mrs. Andrews, Mrs. Crandall, Mrs. C. B. Darwin, E. H. Williams, 
J. B. Howell, Mrs. Shields, Mrs. Annie Wittenmyer, Miss Mary Kibben, Miss 
M. E. Shelton, Elijah Sells, Dr. Horton, and C. Dunham. — Muscatine WeeUy 
Journal, January 28, 1864. 



organization were a president, a vice president from each 
Congressional District, a recording secretary, a correspond- 
ing secretary, a treasurer, and a board of trustees composed 
of two members from each Congressional District. William 
M. Stone became president; Miss Mary Kibben, recording 
secretary; Miss M. E. Shelton, corresponding secretary; 
and N. H. Brainerd, treasurer.^®^ 

Under the rules of the new association benevolent and 
religious organizations and individuals were eligible to 
membership upon the payment of five dollars a year or 
twenty-five dollars for a life membership. Organizations 
enrolling as members were entitled to one delegate to all 
meetings of the association. All benevolent organizations 
and individuals, as far as possible, were urged to join.^^^ 

The first meeting of the board of trustees took place on 
the 4th of February, 1864, at Des Moines. The members 
discussed methods of financing the undertaking, and decided 
to appoint agents in each county and sub-agents in each 
town to solicit subscriptions. Another meeting was held at 
Davenport in March and as there was a considerable 
amount of funds in the treasury at that date as a result of 
the collections taken on Thanksgiving Day the trustees de- 
cided to take immediate steps to establish a home. A com- 
mittee was appointed to lease a building and make arrange- 
ments for receiving children, and Rev. P. P. Ingalls was 
named as general agent to visit every county in the State 

282 The vice presidents were : first district, Mrs. G. Q. Wright ; second district, 
Mrs. E. L. Cadle; third district, Mrs. J. T. Hancock; fourth district, John E. 
Needham; fifth district, J. W. Cattell; and sixth district, Mrs. Mary M. Bagg. 
The board of trustees consisted of Mrs. Annie Wittenmyer and Mrs. L. B. 
Stephens from the second district, Oran Faville and E. H. Williams from the 
third district, T. S. Parvin and Mrs. Shields from the fourth district, Caleb 
Baldwin and C. C. Cole from the fifth district, and Isaac Pendleton and H. C. 
Henderson from the sixth district. — Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, January 28, 

283 Muscatine WeeTdy Journal, January 28, 1864. 


and every regiment of Iowa men in the army for the pur- 
pose of soliciting subscriptions.^^* The agents of the asso- 
ciation were paid, not with funds taken from the donations 
to the home, but with money furnished by a voluntary asso- 
ciation of a few individuals.2^^ 

A committee which had been appointed by the legislature 
to investigate the proposal that the State should establish 
an orphans^ asylum, made a report in March, 1864. It de- 
scribed the formation and organization of the association, 
and stated that the Iowa State Orphans' Asylum Associa- 
tion proposed to provide immediately for the wants of 
orphans by renting a suitable building, until means could 
be raised to erect a permanent structure.^^^ 

It was estimated that the cost of maintaining two hun- 
dred inmates would be $15,000 a year. The backers of the 
institution believed they could raise $150,000 by voluntary 
subscriptions through their agents; they hoped to raise 
$25,000 among the soldiers, while Aid Societies, religious 
organizations, the Odd Fellows, and the Masons were ex- 
pected to give $15,000. Of the total of $175,000 or more it 
was proposed to invest a part in interest-paying bonds or 
stock as a permanent endowment, while the remainder was 
to be used in equipping a plant. The promoters hoped the 
State legislature would appropriate $5000 or more for the 
yearly support of the institution.^^^ 

The committee declared that it was the solemn duty of 
the State to provide in some way for the support of sol- 
diers' orphans, and the members believed that the organ- 
ization which had already been formed was one in which 

284 Darwin's History of the Iowa State Orphan Asylum in The Avmals of 
Iowa (First Series), Vol. Ill, pp. 454, 455. 

285 The State Press (Iowa City), July 20, 1864. 

286 Senate Journal, 1864, p. 497. 

287 Senate Journal, 1864, pp. 497, 498. 




the legislature could safely place its confidence. Therefore 
the recommendation of the committee was that the General 
Assembly should make an annual appropriation of $5000 to 
aid in the support of the enterprise. A bill to that end was 
introduced by the committee, but failed to pass the legis- 

The project received abundant support from all parts of 
the State. Contributions of money, clothing, furniture, and 
other property which was convertible into cash flowed in 
from all over Iowa. Many of the prominent people of the 
State gave freely, and those in poorer circumstances gave 
what they could spare. One of the most significant contri- 
butions came from the soldiers in the field, who out of their 
small pay forwarded $45,262 for the cause.^^^ Nine regi- 
ments pledged an average of $2800 each. One regiment 
with only 428 men reporting gave $3,855.50, while another 
regiment with eight companies present donated $5239. 
Companies in various regiments contributed from $200 to 
$820, one company of twenty-nine men giving $535 ; another 
of fifty-seven men gave $710, another of thirty-seven men 
gave $675, and one with seventy-three men gave $820. In 
one company two men gave $75 each, eight men gave $25 
each, one man gave $15, sixteen men gave $10 each, and two 
men gave $5 each.^^^ ' ' There has never been any one work 
in the State", declares one writer, *^that has convened so 
many people in large and enthusiastic assemblies, filled so 
many churches and halls, thrilled so many hearts, awakened 
so much emotion, suffused with tears so many eyes, com- 
manded such great liberality, elicited so many prayers, 
prompted so many praises, or enlisted so many great minds 
as the ^Soldiers' Orphans Home'.''^^^ 

Senate Journal, 1864, p. 498. 
289 Bulletin of Iowa Institutions, Vol. II, 1900, p. 301. 

The State Press (Iowa City), July 20, 1864. 
291 Ingersoll's Iowa and the Beiellion, p. 742. 


On July 13, 1864, the committee which had been appointed 
to make arrangements for opening a home reported that a 
large brick building near Farmington in Van Bur en County 
had been leased and was ready to receive children. Two 
rooms in the house were to be furnished by the Young 
Ladies ' League ' % two by the young women of Muscatine, 
one by women of Burlington, and one by the little girls of 
Muscatine, who had held a festival to secure the funds. Ten 
children were taken to the home before there were beds for 
them,2^^ and within three weeks twenty-one orphans had 
been admitted.^^^ Eeports submitted at the second annual 
meeting of the association at Des Moines in June, 1865, 
showed that during the first year the Home had clothed, 
fed and instructed" ninety-seven children and that many 
more were waiting for admission.^^^ gteps were taken at 
this meeting to establish branch homes in other parts of 
the State, and a branch was opened at Cedar Falls on Sep- 
tember 28th, with five inmates, in a building originally built 
for a hotel.2^^ 

It was also decided at the Des Moines meeting to hold a 
fair at Marshalltown, beginning on August 28, 1865, for the 
purpose of raising additional funds.^^^ The arrangements 
were made upon the same general plan as were adopted for 
the sanitary fairs which had already been held in the State. 
Contributions were solicited through all the surrounding 
territory and the response was very generous. ^^"^ When the 
fair had closed it was found that about $50,000 had been 

292 The State Press (Iowa City), July 20, 1864. 

203 Downer's History of Bavenyort and Scott County, Iowa, Vol. I, p. 663. 

294 Bulletin of Iowa Institutions, Vol. II, 1900, pp. 301, 302. 

295 JBepori of the Committee to Visit Soldiers' Orphans' Home in the Iowa 
Legislative Documents, 1866, Vol. II. 

296 Dubuque Semi-Weelcly Times, June 27, 1865. 

297 Payne's History of Story County, Vol. I, p. 272. 



realized in cash and from the sale of merchandise which had 
been contributed.^^^ Thus the enterprise was a great suc- 
cess although, according to the The State Press, it was 
generally conceded to have been a grand humbug; not any 
credit to the State and rather discreditable to the man- 
agers ' '.^^^ 

An interesting article regarding this fair appeared in the 
8t. Louis Despatch, which serves to show the wide publicity 
which it received, as well as to indicate the preparations 
which were made for the event. ^ ^ Marshalltown ' accord- 
ing to the writer, ^ 'is a short ride by rail from Clinton on the 
Mississippi, and as the Fair will be open on the 28th of 
August, it will be a fine opportunity for some of our citizens 
to mingle benevolence with pleasure in a trip to the breezy 
prairies of Iowa. The town contains a population of about 
two thousand, and accommodation has been provided for 
visitors by procuring one thousand wall tents, and a large 
number of iron camp bedsteads. With such sleeping ar- 
rangements, and the fine shooting and fishing in the imme- 
diate neighborhood, there will be a good chance for enjoy- 
ment on the occasion. "^^'^ 

The quarters of the Home at Farmington soon became in- 
adequate, and in the fall of 1865 the managers decided to 
move the institution to Davenport. The people of the lat- 
ter city held a meeting for the purpose of raising funds with 
which to secure the transfer, $5200 being raised in a short 
time.^'^^ The Camp Kinsman barracks were situated at 
Davenport, and since they were no longer needed to house 
the soldiers, a committee was dispatched to Washington 

298 Bulletin of Iowa Institutions, Vol. II, 1900, p. 302. 

299 The State Press (Iowa City), September 13, 1865. 

Quoted from the St. Louis Despatch in the Council Bluffs Nonpareil. 
July 22, 1865. 

301 Downer's History of Davenport and Scott County, loiva. Vol. I, p. 664. 


and was successful in obtaining the comparatively new 
barracks as a borne for tbe orphans. All the camp supplies, 
bed linen, pillows, mattresses, and blankets were included 
in the gift, which proved almost invaluable as a basis for 
the new institution.^^^ On November 16th, the children, 
one hundred and fifty in number, were moved from Farm- 
ington to Davenport. They were met at the train by the 
citizens of the town, who first gave them a good breakfast 
and then escorted them to the old barracks in carriages.^^^ 
The number of orphans in both the home at Davenport 
and in the institution at Cedar Falls grew rapidly and there- 
by a great service was rendered to the people of the State. 
But as the institutions grew in size it became increasingly 
difficult to raise sufficient funds to meet the expenses of 
such a vast undertaking. The result was an appeal to the 
State for aid, and the appointment by the legislature in 
January, 1866, of a committee to visit and report on these 
two institutions. The visits were made in February, and 
the reports prepared and submitted to the General Assem- 
bly presented a survey of the conditions of the homes at 

The Cedar Falls branch had been operating for about 
five months, and was caring for one hundred and two or- 
phans. By finishing all the rooms in the building and mak- 
ing them available for use, one hundred and fifty children 
could be cared for. The report stated that the children 
would compare favorably with an equal number of child- j 
ren gathered promiscuously anywhere. They are all plain- | 
ly but comfortably clad, and in appearance are bright and | 

302 Bulletin of Iowa Institutions, Vol. II, 1900, p. 302. 

303 Downer's History of Davenport and Scott County, Iowa, Vol. I, p. 664; 
Bulletin of Iowa Institutions, Vol. II, 1900, p. 302. I 

so* Report of the Committee to Visit Soldiers' Orphans* Home in the Iowa | 
Legislative Documents, 1866, Vol. II; House Journal, 1866, p. 188. 


cheerful, and happy. We found none sick, and there had 
been no deaths at this Home.^'^^^ 

The committee found that three hundred and thirty-one 
soldiers' orphans were under care at Davenport. An epi- 
demic of measles was then passing through the home, one 
hundred and thirty cases being reported, which had resulted 
in four deaths. The report stated, however, that this was a 
much smaller percentage of deaths than occurred from this 
disease outside of the institution. The estimated value of 
the property of the home was $85,353. Its capacity could 
be extended to accommodate one thousand children by fit- 
ting up all the buildings on the premises.^^^ 

According to the estimate of the committee there would 
be six hundred children in the two homes within a year. 
This would mean an expense of $60,000 or $65,000. The 
available means of the corporation were $37,400 in govern- 
ment bonds, about $40,000 in subscriptions which ^Hhey 
hope to collect," and $2223 in cash. Additional donations 
and subscriptions were hard to secure and, in the words 
of the report, ^^as a private enterprise, this institution 
cannot be maintained much, if any, to exceed another year ; 
the question then arises, shall the institution be suffered 
to go down 1 ' ' The committee recommended that the State 
*^lend a helping hand," and tax the whole property of the 
State, in some judicious manner, for the support of the 
institution. ^^"^ 

This movement to secure State aid was followed by the 
presentation of several petitions to the legislature during 

305 Beport of the Committee to Visit Soldiers ' Orphans ' Home in the Iowa 
Legislative Documents, 1866, Vol. II. 

306 Beport of the Committee to Visit Soldiers ' Orphans ' Home in the Iowa 
Legislative Documents, 1866, Vol. II. 

Beport of the Committee to Visit Soldiers' Orphans' Home in the Iowa 
Legislative Documents, 1866, Vol. II. 

VOL. XVI — 18 


March, from citizens of various counties, asking the State 
to take charge of the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' Home.^^^ 
The result of the agitation was the passage of a law on 
March 31, 1866, providing for the transfer of the property 
of the corporation to the State, and for the support and 
regulation of the institution.^^^ 

A Board of Trustees of the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' 
Home was created by this act. The board held its first 
meeting at Davenport in June, when the property of the 
homes was formally transferred and they became State 
institutions. The association during its brief existence 
had built up an extensive organization, and had collected a 
large amount of money and property. According to the 
officers' reports they had obtained subscriptions of $132,000, 
of which $80,000 had been paid in.^^^ The property trans- 
ferred to the State consisted of 273% acres of land, per- 
sonal property appraised at $26,663.35, and $5,833.69 in 

Soon after the State assumed control a third branch of 
the institution was established at Glenwood in November, 
1866.^^^ The three homes then continued in operation until 
1876, when a radical change was made. The number of 
soldiers' orphans to be cared for was rapidly decreasing, 
and there was no further need of three homes. Conse- 
quently, the homes at Glenwood and Cedar Falls were dis- 

308 Bouse Journal, 1866, pp. 442, 456, 457, 482. 

309 Laws of Iowa, 1866, pp. 83, 84, 85, 86. 

510 Report of the Officers of the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' Home, pp. 5, 6, in 
the Iowa Legislative Documents, 1868, Vol. II. 

311 Report of the Proceedings of the Third Annual Meeting of the Iowa Sol- 
diers' Orphans' Home, p. 39, in the lotva Legislative Documents, 1868, Vol. II. 

Report of the Officers of the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' Home, pp. 5, 6, in 
the Iowa Legislative Documents, 1868, Vol. II. 

Report of the Officers of the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' Home, pp. 5, 6, in 
the Iowa Legislative Documents, 1868, Vol. II. 



continued — the first being converted later into a school for 
the feeble-minded and the property of the latter being 
turned over to the new State Normal College.^^* All the 
children were removed to Davenport, and an act was passed 
which permitted the trustees to admit other destitute child- 
ren besides the orphans of soldiers.^^^ 



Throughout the entire discussion of the relief work of 
the Civil War period, the part played by local Aid Societies 
has stood out most prominently. It was through these 
organizations that the work of the State Commission was 
made possible; from them the fairs received their most 
loyal support ; the care of the soldiers ' families fell heavily 
upon their shoulders; and in the establishment of the Sol- 
diers' Orphans' Home their support was of the greatest 
^ importance. A description of war relief would not, there- 
fore, be complete without at least a brief discussion of the 
work of these societies. 

It has already been noted that local societies were organ- 
ized in practically every community in the State ; and al- 
though they operated under various names, such as Aid 
I Societies, Soldiers' Aid Societies, or Ladies Soldiers' Aid 
I Societies, they were all more or less similar in character, 
j and all were working for the same great cause. In many 
places they were organized as soon as the first Iowa sol- 
diers were called into service ; in other localities they devel- 
1 oped more slowly. Besides the societies representing each 
I village or city, there were many cases in which county or- 

314 Laws of Iowa, 1876, pp. 119, 145. 

315 Laws of Iowa, 1876, pp. 76, 77, 78. 


ganizations were formed to handle matters for the county as 
a whole, in which instances they usually cooperated with 
and often aided the smaller societies in their districts. 
The county relief societies were frequently composed of 
both men and women, with the latter taking a very active 
part ; the smaller units were generally made up only of the 
women of the community, although they were enthusiasti- 
cally supported in their activities by the men. 

As revealed by an examination of the newspapers of that 
time, these societies were constantly busy in the interest of 
relief work. The women not only devoted their time to 
sewing and knitting and preparing articles needed by the 
soldiers, but they were always on the look out for and ready 
to take advantage of new ideas, by which to obtain additional 
supplies of sanitary stores and vegetables and raise money. 
All sorts of entertainments, festivals, and dinners were 
given, and in many places it seemed that one event had 
no sooner occured than arrangements were begun for an- 
other. Sometimes these affairs were given for the benefit 
of the soldiers themselves, and at other times for the pur- 
pose of raising funds with which to relieve distress among 
soldiers' families. These numerous activities were not 
always carried on directly under the auspices of the Aid 
Societies, but in most cases the proceeds were turned over 
to them for distribution. 

Many of the schemes used to obtain money and support 
were unique and interesting. At Iowa City, in January, 
1862, the St. Vincent De Paul Society arranged for a grand 
supper at the Metropolitan Hall to raise funds for the poor 
of the city.^^^ During the following March the Aid Society 
received thirty-four dollars as its share of the receipts 
from a performance of the Campbell Minstrels.^^^ Later 

Bid The State Press (Iowa City), January 22, 1862. 
817 The State Press (Iowa City), March 26, 1862. 



in the year a festival was staged by the Aid Society, by 
means of which the snm of about two hundred dollars was 
cleared to purchase hospital supplies.^^® A fair was held 
early in 1863 by the ladies of Father Emond's church and 
it was announced that a liberal percentage of the proceeds 
would be donated to the relief of soldiers.^^® Another 
festival was arranged by the Aid Society in June which 
brought in over four hundred dollars,^^^ and toward the 
close of the year, when there was much distress among the 
families of soldiers, the same organization held a donation 
party to which people were requested to bring Articles 
useful in a family''. An admission fee of twenty-five cents 
was charged and Subscriptions payable in wood, flour, 
meat, drygoods, groceries, boots and shoes, hats and caps ' ' 
were requested.^^^ 

The first event along this line in Iowa City for the year 
1864 was a dance to raise funds for the relief of soldiers' 
families, at which the receipts were thirty-six dollars and 
the expenditures thirty-eight dollars and fifty cents, but 
undismayed by the deficit, the promoters proposed to hold 
another dance two weeks later, at which ^*a good supper and 
good music" were to be furnished and officers secured to 
maintain good order. "^^^ Closely following the above un- 
successful attempt the Bohemian Relief Society gave a ball 
**for the benefit of the poor and needy among their breth- 
ern"^2^ and the German Supporting Society staged a mas- 
querade ball to raise funds for aiding families among the 
German population.^^* Mr. G. Folsom who operated a 

The State Press (Iowa City), October 4, 1862. 

319 The State Press (Iowa City), December 27, 1862, January 10, 1863. 

320 The State Press (Iowa City), June 20, 1863. 

321 The State Press (Iowa City), December 9, 1863. 

322 The State Press (Iowa City), January 20, 1864. 
32S The State Press (Iowa City), January 13, 1864. 
32iThe State Press (Iowa City), February 3, 1864. 

270 IOWA Journal of history and politics 

toll bridge offered to set aside tlie tolls on one day each 
month for the Iowa City Ladies ' Aid Society, and altogether 
he added one hundred and eighty-nine dollars to the So- 
ciety's funds.^2^ Even the children seemed to catch the 
spirit of the time and in August, 1865, a fair and festival 
for the Orphans ' Home was given by the little girls of the 

Dubuque was also the scene of much activity of a similar 
nature. While the State Fair was in progress in Septem- 
ber, 1863, the ladies of the Aid Society conducted a dining 
room where they served ^^a desert as rich as was ever 
served at the St. Nicholas in New York'', and realized a 
good sum for their work.^^'^ The following week the Aid 
Society received over one hundred and forty-two dollars 
from a concert given at the Congregational church, and sev- 
enty-two dollars and fifty cents from a gymnastic exhibi- 
tion.^2® On Thanksgiving Day in 1863 and 1864, the church- 
es took up collections for the soldiers' families, one hun- 
dred and forty-five dollars being realized the first year,^2o 
and one hundred and sixteen dollars the second year.^^^ 
In January, 1864, a special case of destitution demanded 
special attention and relief, which was secured by taking 
a collection amounting to fifty dollars from strangers stop- 
ping at the Julien House.^^^ At one time it was suggested 
by the press that arrangements for a ^Vegetable holiday" 
be made, as it was believed such an occasion would result in 
such ^ ^ a turnout of men, women and children, with flags and 

325 State Press (Iowa City), February 17, December 28, 1864. 
32^ The State Press (Iowa City), August 2, 1865. 

S27 Dubuque Semi-WeeUy Times, September 18, 1863, March 15, 1864. 
328 Buhuque Semi-WeeMy Times, September 29, 1863. 
320 Dubuque Semi-Weelcly Times, December 1, 1863. 

830 Dubuque Semi-Weekly Times, November 29, 1864. 

831 Dubuque Semi-Weelcly Times, January 8, 1864. 


banners, potatoes, pickles, onions and kraut, as lias never 
before been seen."^^^ 

On Christmas Day, 1863, citizens of Marion cut and 
split one hundred and fifty cords of wood for the benefit 
of **war widows ''.^^^ At Farley, about the same time, a 
festival netted the promoters seventy dollars, which with 
other contributions previously received was sufficient to re- 
lieve the wants of the soldiers' families at that time.^^* A 
festival was also held by the Soldiers' Aid Society of Ep- 
worth during the following April, at which eighty dollars 
in cash was realized.^^^ 

Many soldiers' families in Keokuk were in need of fuel 
during December, 1863, and in order to supply this need a 
**wood procession" was arranged. Farmers from the sur- 
rounding country were asked to bring in a load of wood for 
the poor upon a certain designated day. Upon the ap- 
pointed day one observer counted one hundred and eight 
farmers coming in over a single road between ten and twelve 
o'clock, with their wagons loaded with wood, and in many 
cases with large quantities of flour and vegetables. When 
all were formed into a procession they made a line over a 
mile in length and, headed by a band and banners, the 
parade passed through the streets of the city. About one 
hundred cords of wood were received by the Aid Society, 
which at the existing price was valued at five hundred dol- 

From one of the smaller towns comes an interesting re- 
port of a ^ ^ Mush-and-Milk-Festival ' '. This affair occurred 
at Washington, and was described as **one of the richest 

332 Dubuque Semi-W eeTcly Times, November 1, 1864. 

333 T7ie State Press (Iowa City), February 3, 1864. 

334 Dubuque Semi-WeeTcly Times, January 1, 1864. 

335 Dubuque Semi-WeeJcly Times, April 15, 1864. 
336T/ie W eeTcly Gate City (Keokuk), December 16, 1863. 


and raciest occasions we ever attended. . . . The repast, 
consisting of mush-and-milk, was then partaken of, out of 
tin cups, each partaker furnishing his or her own spoon. 
For a time the rattle of cups entirely drowned the music 
of the band. The mush was dished out steaming hot from 
pans, the milk poured from sprinkling cans, jugs, &c.^\ 
From this event the sum of eighty-four dollars was realized 
for soldiers^ relief. 

Early in the spring of 1863 Mr. Gabriel Little, who lived 
about three miles out of Muscatine, offered thirty acres of 
land for growing potatoes for the soldiers and their famil- 
ies, upon the condition that a picnic party should be organ- 
ized to plant them. The offer was accepted, and the plant- 
ing was completed in less than a day, ^^by a voluntary, 
spontaneous and almost instantaneous gathering of loyal- 
hearted men, women and children. The field was cared 
for by neighboring farmers and voluntary workers and 
again in the fall a picnic was organized to harvest the crop. 
This event was described as follows : 

Yesterday was the time set for digging the potatoes. Accord- 
ingly about 200 persons, of all ages and conditions, from the grey- 
haired sire and matron to the school boy and girl just entering 
their teens, assembled and went to work with a will, using plows, 
harrows, hoes and fingers to gather the esculents from their native 
soil. If our soldier boys could have looked upon the scene, and 
beheld their fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, wives and 
sweethearts, engaged in the laudable and laborious work of pro- 
viding for their comfort, their hearts would have been cheered and 
their resolutions strengthened in the noble cause in which they are 
engaged. Although most of those at work were novices at farm 
labor, they made good progress, and by four o'clock two thirds of 
the 'patch' had been gone over and the potatoes hauled to the city 
and stored away. 

B^'f Muscatine Weeldy Journal, March 4, 1864. 



The crop amounted to about one thousand bushels, and 
since potatoes were selling at sixty cents, **with a pros- 
pect of being a dollar before New Year'*, it meant a 
large addition to the stores of the Ladies Soldiers' Aid 

It was through such activities as these and many others 
that the Aid Societies were able to forward such large 
amounts of supplies to the armies and at the same time aid 
the poor at home. Just what many of the organizations 
really accomplished is shown by their periodical reports. 
In Polk County and Des Moines several societies were 
operating during the war. One of these, which was organ- 
ized December 17, 1864, arranged a festival for the last day 
of the same month which cleared $4245. By the close of 
hostilities this society had raised $7261.^^^ The Indepen- 
dence Aid Society was formed October 25, 1861, and at the 
end of the following month was prepared to send forward 
its first box, containing twenty quilts, twelve straw ticks, 
twenty-four pillows, twenty-eight shirts, thirty pairs of 
socks, and various smaller articles.^^^ 

By cash contributions and a course of lectures, the Coun- 
cil Bluffs Soldiers ' Aid Society for the first five months of 
1865, raised $504, of which $299 was turned over to the 
Christian Commission, and the remainder given to the 
Chicago Sanitary Fair.^*^ From September 26, 1861, the 
date of its organization, to July 1, 1862, the Muscatine 
Ladies Soldiers' Aid Society had sent sixteen boxes and 
barrels, valued at $1,250.95, to the Keokuk organization 
and the Iowa Army Sanitary Commission. This first re- 

338 Muscatine WeeTcly Journal, May 29, July 10, October 23, 1863. 

339 Dixon's Centennial History of Polh County, pp. 126, 127, 128; Porter's 
Annals of PolJc County, Iowa, and City of Des Moines, pp. 210, 211, 212. 

34:0 Buchanan County Guardian (Independence), October 22, 29, December 3, 

341 Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 20, 1865. 


port of the organization stated that the society had met 
every week since its formation and would continue to do 
so ^*as long as there is a soldier to care for, and a rag can 
be found in Muscatine large enough to make lint. Dur- 
ing the last six months of 1862 this society forwarded sup- 
plies valued at $792.60.3^3 

The report of the treasurer of the Iowa City Aid Society 
for the first year estimated the total amount of its contri- 
butions in money and materials to be over $1000. For the 
year closing in October, 1864, the same society sent supplies 
valued at $276.50 to the Orphans' Home; goods worth 
$747.84 were distributed among soldiers ' families ; and $2, 
155.87 worth of sanitary stores were forwarded to the 
armies. Thus, to the three causes this one society made a 
total contribution of $3,180.21 during a single year.^^* 

Eakl S. Fullbrook 

State University of Iowa 
Iowa City 

342 Muscatine WeeMy Journal, July 4, 1862. 

343 Muscatine WeeMy Journal, January 30, 1863 ; The State Press (Iowa 
City), November 8, 1862. 

344 The State Press (Iowa City), December 14, 1864. 


There have been many varying stories told of the death 
of General Albert Sidney Johnston, commanding the Con- 
federate army, at the Battle of Shiloh; and these stories 
have varied greatly as to the exact place where he fell, as to 
what he was doing at the time of receiving the mortal 
wound, and as to how the wound was inflicted. It has been 
widely believed, especially in the South, that General Johns- 
ton was leading a charge against the Union lines when he 
was struck. Such a story might well be discarded as untrue, 
I even if there was not positive evidence to the contrary. 
Such an act on the part of the commander of an army would 
be the height of folly. 
^ Fortunately we have the true story as told by the only 
person who was at General Johnston's side during the 
j brief moments between the receiving of the wound and the 
1 closing of his eyes in death. Isham G. Harris, Volunteer 
l| Aid on General Johnston's staff, was that person. At the 
I opening of the Civil War, Isham G. Harris was Governor 
of the State of Tennessee. As Governor, he refused to 
respond to President Lincoln's call for troops, but cast in 
j his lot with General Johnston's army when it evacuated 
I Nashville, after the surrender of Fort Donelson. Thus 
I Harris became a member of Johnston's staff and was pres- 
! ent in that capacity at the battle of Shiloh. In 1896 when 
Harris, after long and persistent persuasion on the part of 
I the friends of Gen. Johnston, consented to visit Shiloh Park 
I and clear up the confusion that had so long enveloped the 



death of his chief, he was representing the State of Tennes- 
see in the United States Senate. 

The writer hereof has in his possession a carbon copy of 
a letter from Maj. D. W. Eeed, Secretary and Historian of 
the Shiloh National Military Park Commission, to General 
Bazil W. Duke, a member of the Commission, describing in 
detail the visit of Senator Harris to the battle ground for 
the purpose of identifying the spot where General Johnston 
fell and of telling what he remembered of the incident. As 
far as the writer knows, this correspondence has never had 
publication in any more permanent form than that of local 
newspapers. Unless General Duke has preserved the orig- 
inal this carbon duplicate is the only original copy of the 
account in existence. The story seems to be of sufficient 
historical value to deserve publication in The Iowa Jouknal 
of histoky and politics. 

Joseph W. Rich 

The State Historical Society of Iowa 
Iowa City Iowa 


[Following is the letter of Major D. W. Reed to General Duke describing the 
visit of Senator Harris to Shiloh Park for the purpose above indicated.] 

July 30, 1906. 

General Bazil W. Duke, 

Louisville, Ky. 

Dear General : — 

I acknowledge receipt of your letter of the 6tli instant in 
which you refer to the account I gave you of the identifica- 
tion by Senator Harris of the spot where General J ohnston 
was killed, and asking me to put the account in writing just 
as I told it to you. 

In April 1896, Colonel Looney wrote me that Senator 
Isham G. Harris, who was Governor of Tennessee in 1862, 
and was serving as Volunteer Aid on the staff of General 



Albert Sidney Johnston at the battle of Shiloh, had con- 
sented to visit the field for the purpose of fixing the place 
where General Johnston fell, and asking me to meet the 
Senator at Corinth and accompany him to the battle field. 

On the road from Corinth I attempted to ask the Senator 
something in regard to the purpose of his visit. He 
checked me at once and said : ^ ^ Please do not ask me to say 
anything about that. The whole subject of Shiloh is a bitter 
memory which I do not allow myself to talk about or think 
about when I can help it. I have never visited the field since 
the battle and would not now except at the urgent request 
of the friends of General Johnston. I have retained in my 
memory a very distinct picture of the events of that day 
which has never been disturbed by discussing any of the 
questions regarding the battle, or reading any of the ac- 
counts and I believe that I can, if allowed to retain that 
picture undisturbed, locate the exact place where the Gen- 
eral fell and where he died, but if I were to listen to the 
opinions of others and discuss the matter I might get 
confused. ' ' 

Arriving at Pittsburg Landing, we found a large number 
of the friends of the Senator assembled to greet him and 
anxious to assist him. He repelled all allusions to the sub- 
ject of his visit, and to General Buell, who invited him to a 
seat in his carriage, he said: '^You will please excuse me. 
General, for until the matter I have in hand is disposed of 
I desire to be alone. ' ' He then asked to be supplied with a 
riding horse and asked me to get a horse and go with him. 
When mounted he said: ^'Now, Major, I wish you to ride 
ahead and conduct me, by nearest route, to a point near the 
right of our line where there is a small stream running 
nearly east with quite high banks, say seventy or eighty 
feet high, on this side of the stream. When you are at that 
place please stop and leave me to myself Eemembering a 


place on Locust Grove Branch, south of the Peach Orchard 
that answered this description, I led the way to the spring 
near Prentiss ' head-quarters and then down the ravine un- 
til the left bank was quite high when I stopped and told the 
Senator that we were near the Confederate right and asked 
him if the other conditions suited him. He asked if there 
was a camp just back and to our right! I told him there 
was the camp of the 18th Wisconsin. He then rode up the 
bluff and spent some time in a careful examination of the 
place, then taking position near the edge of the bluff, his 
face towards the front, called me to him and said: ^^Here, 
within ten steps of the place where I am. General Johnston 
sat on his horse for an hour and a half or two hours from 
about noon on Sunday, putting his Eeserve in position. 
Everything is perfectly natural just as I remember it. 
There is the stream where our orderlies went for water and 
where soldiers were filling their canteens, over there was 
the camp that we passed through in coming here. I cannot 
be mistaken, this is the place.'' At my suggestion General 
Buell and others who had been following the movements, 
were called and the Senator told them as he told me, that : 
^'Here General Johnston, with his staff around him, was 
stationed from soon after noon to about 2 o'clock while he 
was putting Breckinridge's Eeserve Corps in position." 

He then said to me: ^^I want to go about half a mile in 
what seems to me to be a due north course. You will know 
best how to get through these thick brush. Lead the way 
and when you have gone half a mile stop." I asked him if 
he remembered seeing any fields or clearings in going that 
half mile? He thought a moment and then said : Yes there 
was a clearing on the right, and at the end of the half mile 
there should be a large field on our left." With this in- 
formation I conducted him to the south east corner of the 
Peach Orchard field and halted. The Senator rode out into 



that field but after a brief survey rode east across the Ham- 
burg and Savannah road and stopped near a large oak tree, 
where he sat for several minutes and then went to the ravine 
fifty yards in the rear where he was out of my sight for a 
time. He returned to the big tree and motioned to me to 
come to him. He was seated on his horse, exactly where the 
Johnston monument now stands, his face to the front. As I 
approached he said: ^'General Johnston was following the 
advance of Bowen's brigade: He had sent all the members 
of his staff to other parts of the field with orders: I was 
the last to leave him, with an order to put Statham's brigade 
in motion across the field to our left. (Peach Orchard) 
When I returned General Johnston was alone, sitting on his 
horse near a large oak tree. I saw him reel in the saddle 
and rode to his side, threw my right arm around him and 
asked: * General, are you hurt!^ He replied: ^Yes I fear 
seriously.' I supported him in the saddle and guided the 
two horses to the ravine in the rear: lifted him from his 
horse and placed him on the ground and called to the only 
person in sight, a soldier resting under a tree, sent him to 
the line in front for a brandy flask. About this time some 
of the members of the staff came riding down from the left 
and we tore open the Generals uniform in search of the 
wound but did not find it until after he was dead. He was 
unconscious from the time I took him from his horse and 
died in a few minutes, at 2 :30 p. m. Some one called an 

\ ambulance in which the body was placed and started on the 

|; road to Corinth, and I reported to General Beauregard. 

I The Senator then explained that everything around the 
place was perfectly natural, and fitted the picture he had in 
mind : the field where Statham 's brigade was put in motion : 
the large lone oak tree under which the General sat: the 
ravine to the rear where the soldier was resting : the lean- 

, ing tree in the ravine under which the General died, are all 


here just as they were then. I say emphatically, this is 
the place. I cannot be mistaken. ' ' 

I suggested that the people here have a tradition that the 
General was killed further to the front, and that he was the 
only person living who could convince them of their error, 
and asked him to remain where he was and allow me to call 
the many people, who had been following in the distance, 
and that he tell them the story as he had told it to me. He j 
readily consented, and retold it in his own convincing way, I 
satisfying every one that heard him that he was exactly 
right in all of his conclusions. One person only, seeming to 
wish to hear more said : A soldier who was one of General 
Johnston's scouts says that he saw the General fall and that 
it was on the north side of the Peach Orchard while leading 
a charge of the Tennessee brigade." The Senator replied: 
**That is impossible. The story that he was leading a ! 
charge is a fallacy: He was behind the lines directing the ! 
movements of the reserve : was alone when hit, undoubtedly j 
by a stray shot fired by the enemy retreating before Bowen's 
men : no one but members of his staff saw him fall, or knew 
of his death until it was reported by them to General 
Beauregard." I 

I asked the Senator to put his statements all in writing I 
for the record files of the office. He said that he would do | 
so as soon as he got home, but evidently did not do so as it 
never reached the office. 

While on the way from Corinth the Senator expressed j 
himself as not in sympathy with the effort to keep alive the | 
memories of the war by improving these battle-fields. Bet- | 
ter, he said, if we could blot out all its memories so that | 
there might be no remembrances of it among the partic- I 
ipants or among their children. After his ride over the 
Park and after he had seen what was being done, he said: i 
have changed my mind about your work here, and say j 


that I am pleased with your plans and will take pleasure in 
doing anything I can, in Congress or out, to assist you in 
the work. ' ^ 

The monument, erected by the National Commission, on 
the spot where Senator Harris says the General was when 
he saw him reel in the saddle, bears an inscription on a 
bronze tablet as follows : 

General Albert Sidney Johnston, Commanding the Con- 
federate army, was mortally wounded here at 2:30 P. M. 
April 6, 1862. Died in the ravine, 50 yards south-east.'' 

In the ravine under a leaning tree is an iron tablet with 
colored letters bearing this inscription : 

^ ^ General Albert Sidney Johnston, Commanding the Con- 
federate Army, Died here at 2 :30 P. M. April 6, 1862 

Following this heading is a synopsis of the story of Sen- 
ator Harris as recited in the foregoing. 

Respectfully submitted by yours sincerely, 
I certify that above (Signed) D. W. Reed 

is an exact carbon copy Secretary, 
of the original letter. D. W. Reed 

VOL. XVI — 19 


The Political History of the Public Lands from 1840 to 1862. By 
George M. Stephenson, Ph. D. Boston : Richard C. Badger. 1917. 
Pp. 296. Plates. It no longer requires any argument to convince 
any one acquainted with American history that the public domain 
has been the most potent single factor in determining the character 
of our history and institutions. Hence the value of a study such as 
that presented in this volume goes without question. The scope of 
the work is indicated in the author's statement that he has attempt- 
ed ' ' to trace the history of the public land legislation in Congress, 
to portray the sentiment of the different sections of the country 
relative to the disposal of the public domain, and to estimate the 
influence of the public lands on the political and legislative situ- 
ation in general in the period from 1840 to 1862." An examination 
of the volume indicates that these purposes have been accomplished 
in a satisfactory manner. Especially interesting are the chapters 
dealing with homestead legislation. 

lowans will find much to interest them in this volume. Not only 
was the author bom in Iowa, but he draws no small part of his data 
from early Iowa newspapers, and there are frequent references to 
the action and attitude of Iowa men in Congress. Possibly he 
might with justice have given more credit to Senator James Harlan 
for his effective support of the homestead bill. The volume is 
abundantly supplied with notes and references; it has a bibliog- 
raphy which furnishes ample evidence of the author's diligence in 
research ; and it is provided with a good index. 

Frontier Advance on the Upper Ohio, 1778-1779. Edited with 
introduction and notes by Louise Phelps Kellogg. Madison: 
State Historical Society of Wisconsin. 1916, Pp. 509. Portraits, 
plates, map. This is volume twenty-three of the Collections of the 
Society, and volume four in the Draper Series. It will be recalled 
that Dr. Phelps is joint editor with the late Dr. Reuben G. Thwaites 




of three volumes of documents dealing with earlier phases of the 
Revolutionary War in the West. The present volume, although 
appearing in a different form than its predecessors, is a part of the 
same general plan. 

The documents contained in this volume cover the period from 
May, 1778, to July, 1779, but, as the editor points out in her intro- 
duction, "within these fifteen months occurred the most momentous 
events of the Revolution in the West, fraught with important con- 
sequences, not only for the western frontier but for the success of 
the war and for the future of the American people. ' ' Letters from 
the correspondence of Edward Hand, Lachlan Mcintosh, John 
Gibson, Daniel Brodhead, John Heckewelder, and many other men 
who played large parts in the American conquest of the West afford 
an intimate personal view of the events of the period. The docu- 
ments are supplied with an abundance of editorial notes, and there 
is an excellent index. 

A useful list of references on the submarine is to be found in the 
Bulletin of the New York Public Library for January. 

The Library of Congress has issued a Calendar of the Papers of 
Franklin Pierce, compiled by W. L. Leech. A letter from Senator 
George W. Jones of Iowa, and two letters from Augustus C. Dodge, 
then Minister to Spain, are listed in the calendar. 

The State Constitutions and the Federal Constitution and Organ- 
ic Laws of the Territories and other Colonial Dependencies of the 
United States of America, compiled and edited by Charles Kettle- 
borough, is a very useful volume of over sixteen hundred pages 
published by B. F. Bowen & Company of Indianapolis. 

Volume twenty-seven of The American Nation: A History, edited 
by Albert Bushnell Hart, has recently been issued by Harper & 
Brothers. The volume is written by Frederic Austin Ogg and is 
entitled National Progress 1907-1917. 

Grace Gardner Griffin's annual bibliography of Writings on 
American History, covering publications for the year 1915, has 
been issued from the Yale University Press. 


Health Insurance is the topic of discussion in the December issue 
of The American Labor Legislation Review. The March number 
contains numerous articles dealing with various phases of Labor in 
War Time. 

America's Place in the World, by George Louis Beer; The Amer- 
ican Essay in War Time, by Agnes Repplier ; A Plea for Honesty, 
by Moorfield Storey ; The Expansion of our Army, by William A. 
Ganoe; The Science of Citizenship, by Ellsworth Huntington; and 
The Railways in Peace and War, by Samuel 0. Dunn, are among 
the articles in the January number of The Yale Review. 

In The Survey for December 22, 1917, there is an article on The 
Trend of Social Service, by Robert A. Woods, in which there is a 
discussion of the character and progress of social work in Iowa and 
other States of this region. 

The Socialist Vote in the Municipal Elections of 1917, by Paul H. 
Douglas; Wooden Cities: The National Army Cantonments, by 
John Ihlder ; Patriotism in Canadian Cities, by Mrs. H. P. Plump- 
tre ; and Recent Developments in the Public Utility Field Affecting 
Franchise Policies and Municipal Ownership, by Delos F. Wilcox, 
are among the articles in the March number of the National Munic- 
ipal Review. 

A History of the Australian Ballot System in the United States 
is the subject of a doctor's dissertation by Eldon Cobb Evans, which 
has been published by the University of Chicago Press. 

The annual Review of Historical Publications Relating to Canada 
for the year 1916, edited by George M. Wrong, H. H. Langton, and 
W. Stewart Wallace, has been issued from the University of 
Toronto Press. 

Volume seven, number four of the Proceedings of the Academy 
of Political Science in the City of New York contains a number of 
addresses and papers on the general topic of the Economic Condi- 
tions of Winning the War, edited by Henry Raymond Mussey. The 
sub-topics are: conservation and thrift; transportation, shipping, 



and aircraft production; relations of labor and capital; and wel- 
fare of soldiers and sailors. 

The Story of Josiah Henson, by W. B. Hartgrove ; and Slavery in 
California, by Delilah L. Beasley, are among the articles in the 
January number of The Journal of Negro History. 

The articles in The Military Historian and Economist for October 
are the following : German Military Theory at the Outbreak of the 
War, by General Palat; Man and Nature at Port Hudson, 1863- 
1917, by Milledge L. Bonham, Jr.; Population and War, by S. 
Hutter; and The Oil Factor in Mexico, by Julius Klein. There is 
also a continuation of the Personal Memoirs of General D. S. 

War Administration of the Railways in the United States and 
Great Britain is the title of a monograph by Frank H. Dixon and 
Julius H. Parmalee which has recently been published by the Car- 
negie Endowment for International Peace in its series of Prelim- 
inary Economic Studies of the War. 

The periodical known as Americana will hereafter be published 
quarterly instead of monthly by the American Historical Society 
instead of by the National Americana Society. The magazine has 
been enlarged in size and its appearance has been improved. In 
the January number there appear, among others, the following 
articles: The Decline of English Influence in Turkey, by Wilma 
Orem ; Chapters in the History of Halifax, Nova Scotia, by Arthur 
"W. H. Eaton; The Brave Industry of Whaling, by Zephaniah W. 
Pease ; and The Northwest Territory and the Ordinance of 1787, by 
Charles A. Ingraham. 

Financing the War is the general topic of discussion in the Janu- 
ary number of The Annals of the American Academy of Political 
and Social Science. The various papers are grouped in six parts 
dealing with the task of financing the war, borrowing by the gov- 
ernment, the relationship between loans and taxes, government 
loans and inflation, the proper kind of taxes, and the finan- 


cial experiences of our allies. Tlie March number is devoted to the 
discussion of War Adjustments in Railroad Regulation. Railroad 
regulation on trial, war pressure for adequate service, present ef- 
fects of war control of railroads, and continuing problems of public 
policy are the main topics under which the subject is discussed. 
There are also some documents and statistics pertinent to current 
railroad problems. 

The Visit of the French Mission, April-May, 1917, by Walter W. 
Spooner; The Alsace-Lorraine Question, contributed by the French 
High Commission ; and Belgium and the Rocky Mountain Club, by 
Walter W. Spooner, are among the articles in the October-Decem- 
ber number of The Journal of American History. 

Among the articles in The South Atlantic Quarterly for January 
are the following which are of historical interest: A General Sur- 
vey of the Anti-Slavery Movement in England, by Frank J. Kling- 
berg ; Political and Social Aspects of Luther's Message, by William 
K. Boyd; and Some New Light on John Paul Jones, by S. A, Ashe. 


A recent volume in the series of University of Michigan Publica- 
tions deals with The Life and Work of George Sylvester Morris, for 
many years a member of the faculty of the University of Michigan, 
written by R. M. Wenley. 

The January number of The Road-Maker contains, among other 
things, a review of One Year's Experience in the Federal Aid Road 
Law, by Logan W. Page. 

Anglo-Saxon Ideals, by Yemon P. Squires; Norway's Struggle 
for Freedom, by Samuel Torgerson; Who Ought to Have Wealth?, 
by George M. J anes ; and Woman and Her Future, by J ohn Morris 
Gillette, are among the articles in The Quarterly Journal of the 
University of North Dakota for January. 

Number eight of the Studies in the Social Sciences published by 
the University of Minnesota consists of a monograph on The Peti- 
tion of Right by Frances Helen Relf. 



An address on the career of George Berkeley, by George Herbert 
Palmer; a paper on The War and the English Constitution, by 
Ludwik Ehrlich ; and a discussion of The Reconstruction of France 
after the War, by Gilbert Chinard, are contributions in the July, 
1917, number of The University of California Chronicle. 

The Battle of Slim Buttes, fought in 1876 against the Sioux In- 
dians, is the title of a short article which appears in the January 
number of the Journal of the United States Cavalry Association. 

The October-December number of The American Indian Maga- 
zine is a "Special Sioux Number". Among the articles are the 
following: The Fighting Sioux, by Chauncey Yellow Robe; The 
Sioux Outbreak of 1862, by Arthur C. Parker; The Situation at 
Santee, by S. M. Brosius ; The Sioux of Yesterday and To-day, by 
Charles A. Eastman, and The Truth About the Wounded Knee 
Massacre, copied f rom the Lincoln Dadly Star. 

A detailed analysis of The Language of the Salinian Indians, by 
J. Alden Mason ; an interesting historical account of The Yana In- 
dians, by T. T. Waterman; a study of Yahi Archery, by Saxton T. 
Pope; and a brief discussion of Yana Terms of Relationship, by 
Edward Sapir, are recent numbers of the University of California 
Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology. 

Harrison Clifford Dale is the author of a volume on The Ashley- 
Smith Explorations and the Discovery of a Central Route to the Pa- 
cific, 1822-1829, which has been brought out by the Arthur H. 
Clark Company of Cleveland. The author's account of the expe- 
ditions is accompanied by the original narratives by William H. 
Ashley and Jedediah S. Smith, and by portions of two journals 
kept by Harrison C. Rogers, a member of Smith's party. ''The 
expeditions of William Henry Ashley and Jedediah Strong Smith ' ', 
says the author in the preface, ' ' are but two divisions of one enter- 
prise, the discovery and utilization of a central route to the Pacific 
by way of the Platte, the Interior Basin, and the Colorado River. 
Ashley and his men platted the course as far as Green River and 
the Great Salt Lake by way of the North Platte and the South 


Platte; Smith, Ashley's successor in business, continued the lat- 
ter 's explorations, reaching California by way of the Colorado 
River and the Mohave Desert, returning from central California, 
eastward, across the present state of Nevada, to the Great Salt Lake 
again. A second expedition carried Smith, the first white man, the 
entire length of California and Oregon to the Columbia.'' 


In the October-December number of Iowa Conservation T. C. 
Stephens presents A Review of Wild Life Protection in Iowa; and 
James H. Lees discusses Park Sites Along Des Moines Valley. 

Biographical sketches of Dr. A. O. Field; some interesting rem- 
iniscences of the Polk County Medical Society; and an article on 
the history of The Iowa State Medical Society, by D. S. Fairchild, 
are among the contributions in the April, 1917, number of The 
Journal of the Iowa State Medical Society. 

Our Sons at Camp Dodge is the title of a book of pictures issued 
by the Des Moines Register and Evening Tribune, which is of in- 
terest now and of value for future preservation. 

The Contribution of the Smith-Hughes Act to Home Economics, 
by Genevieve Fisher; and Suggestions for Teaching Patriotism in 
Our Rural Schools, by Jessie M. Parker, are among the articles in 
Midland Schools for February. 

Among the many papers in volume twenty-four of the Proceed- 
ings of the Iowa Academy of Science is one by James H. Lees on 
Some Fundamental Concepts of Earth History. 

A biographical sketch of the late Bernard Murphy, the veteran 
editor of the Vinton Eagle; and a short article entitled Some News- 
paper History, dealing with the period when the General Assembly 
subscribed for newspapers for its members, are to be found in the 
March number of The Corn Belt Publisher, printed at Denison, 

A review of Bridge Patent Litigation in Iowa, by Thomas H. 
MacDonald ; and The Engineer — His Duty to his Community and 



his Country, by H. Haugen, are articles in the January number of 
The Iowa Engineer, 

The Scotch-Irish and Charles Scott's Descendants and Belated 
Families, by Orion C. Scott, is a book which contains biographical 
data concerning a number of residents of Iowa, past and present. 

Among the articles in the January number of the Journal of 
History published at Lamoni by the Reorganized Church of Jesus 
Christ of Latter Day Saints are the following: a continuation of 
Voices and Visions of the Yesterdays, by Vida E. Smith ; Polygamy 
from an Official Standpoint, by Heman C. Smith; and Mississippi 
Biver Dam, by Heman C. Smith. 

The Overdraft Evil as Illustrated hy Conditions in Iowa Banks, 
by Nathaniel R. Whitney, is an article which has been reprinted 
from the March number of the American Economic Beview. 

A digest of the Law of Municipal Elections in Iowa, and a paper 
on American Municipalities in War Time, by Robert E. Cushman, 
are among the contents of the February number of American 
Municipalities. In the March number, among other things, L. C. 
Busch describes Bome's War Chest Association, which constitutes 
a unique method of raising funds for war work. 

The January number of the Iowa State Highway Commission 
Service Bulletin contains a list of the accidents on Iowa highways 
during the year 1917. The list indicates that these accidents re- 
sulted in 281 deaths and 5208 injuries. 

The City Builder is the title of a publication issued by the Iowa 
City Commercial Club, the first number of which appeared in 

The January and February numbers of The Iowa Alumnus con- 
tain continuations of the "Honor Roll" of University students, 
alumni, and faculty members who are in some branch of war ser- 
vice. Two articles in the February number are : The Graduate Col- 
lege, by Dan Elbert Clark; and For the Good of the Ship: The 


Story of the Great Lakes Naval Training Station, by Emerson 

A very interesting autobiography of Henry Wallace has been 
running for several months in Wallaces' Farmer under the heading 
of TJnde Henry's Own Story. 

A brief biographical sketch of the late Rev. A. L. Frisbie is to be 
found in the January number of The Grinmell Review. In the 
March number there is a discussion of Education and Internation- 
alism and a description of Grinnell's service flag. 

William Hollis Wynn — A Tribute, by J. N. Bradley ; a sketch of 
the life of J ohn M. Wells ; and an article entitled A Glimpse of the 
Remarkable Work of Geo. W. Carver, the Negro Scientist, by Littell 
McClung, are among the contents of The Alumnus of Iowa State 
College for January. The February number contains the Ames 
Service Boll. A sketch of the career of Dr. Sesco Stewart is to be 
found in the March issue. 

The National Economy Campaign, by Gates W. McGarrah, is an 
article in the February number of The Northwestern Banker. 
Frank Warner discusses the War Savings Campaign in Iowa in the 
March issue. 

Three articles are to be found in the Iowa Law Bulletin for Jan- 
uary, namely : Residence and Domicil, by Joseph H. Beale ; Progress 
in Uniform State Legislation, by S. R. Child; and the second in- 
stallment of the study of Judicial Relaxation of the Carrier's Lia- 
bility, by R. M. Perkins. The latter monograph is concluded in the 
March number, and there is also an article by Herbert F. Goodrich 
on Permanent Structures and Continuing Injuries: The Iowa Rule. 

The Iowa Magazine for February opens with an illustrated ac- 
count of a visit to the Indians in Tama County. Other articles are : 
^'The Ledges" — Nature's Gift to Iowa, by Carl F. Henning; Iowa 
State Council of National Defense, by George Gallarno; An Am- 
bassador — Joseph Fort Newton, by Bert V. Chappel; and Turning 
Social Liabilities into Assets, by Don W. Hutchinson, in which is set 



forth the theory of prison reform practiced by former Warden 
Sanders at the Fort Madison Penitentiary. 


Adams, Henry Carter, 

Description of Industry: An Introduction to Economics. New 

York .-Henry Holt & Co. 1917. 
Borrowing as a Phase of War Financiering (Annals of the 
American Academy of Political and Social Science, January, 
Athearn, Walter Scott, 

Religious Education and American Democracy. Boston: Pil- 
grim Press. 1917. 
Ayres, Philip Wheelock, 

Lincoln as a Neighbor (Review of Reviews, February, 1918). 
Bashford, Herbert, 

At the Shrine of Song (new edition). Los Angeles: W. T. 
Potter. 1917. 
Bauer, George Neander (joint author), 

Plane and Spherical Trigonometry. New York: D. C. Heath 
& Co. 1917. 

Logarithmic and Trigonometric Tables. New York: D. C. 
Heath & Co. 1917. 
Bess, Elmer Allen, 

College Men in the Army (School and Society, February 16, 

Brewer, Luther Albertus, 

Beside Our Fire-place. Cedar Rapids : The Torch Press. 1917. 
Butler, Ellis Parker, 

Huts of the White Knights (Touchstone, January, 1918). 
Devine, Edward Thomas, 

Social Problems of the War (Proceedings of the National Con- 
ference of Social Work, 1917). 
Ferber, Edna, 

Why I am For the Y. M. C. A. (Touchstone, January, 1918). 


Ficke, Arthur Davison, 

Prayer Before Summer (Bookman, November, 1917). 
Heilman, Ralph Emerson, 

What is the Remedy for Diminishing Profits f ( System, Febru- 
ary, 1918). 
Hillis, Newell Dwight, 

German Atrocities: Their Nature and Philosophy. New York: 

Fleming H. Revell Co. 1918. 
England's Transformation (Canadian Magazine, December, 

1917) . 
Homaday, William T., 

A Searchlight on Germany. New York: American Defense 
Society. 1917. 
Hughes, Rupert, 

Long Ever Ago. New York : Harper & Brothers. 1918. 
Lewis, Ervin Eugene, 

Foreign Languages and Mathematics as Requirements for Ad- 
mission to, and Graduation from, American Colleges and 
Universities (School Review, January, 1918). 
MacLean, George Edwin, 

Studies in Higher Education in Ireland and Wales. Washing- 
ton: Government Printing Office. 1917. 
Studies in Higher Education in England and Scotland. Wash- 
ington : Government Printing Office. 1917. 
Pearce, James Newton (joint author). 

The Electromotive Force and Free Energy of Dilution of 
Lithium Chloride in Aqueous and Alcoholic Solutions (Jour- 
nal of the American Chemical Society, March, 1918). 
Ross, Edward Alsworth, 

Adult Recreation as a Social Problem (American Journal of 
Sociology, January, 1918). 
Russell, Charles Edward, 

New Socialist Alignment (Harper's Monthly Magazine, March, 

1918) . 
Scott, Orion C, 

The Scotch-Irish and Charles Scott's Descendants and Related 
Families. Berwyn, Illinois : Published by the author. 1917. 



Stephenson, George M., 

The Political History of the Public Lands from 1840 to 1862. 
Boston: Richard Q. Badger. 1917. 
Thorne, Clifford, 

Government Operation of American Railroads (Annals of the 
American Academy of Political and Social Science, March, 
Whaling, Heiskell B., 

Has the Importance of Federal Valuation of Railroads teen 
Increased or Lessened by Federal Control of Operation? 
(Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social 
Science, March, 1918). 
Whitney, Nathaniel R., 

The Overdraft Evil as Illustrated by Conditions in Iowa Banks 
(American Economic Review, March, 1918). 


Sanitary Fairs in Iowa, by Earl S. FuUbrook, in the Clinton Her- 
ald, January 1, 3, 1918 ; and the Montezuma Palladium, Janu- 
ary 1, 1918. 

Thirty Years a Resident of Ames, by Mrs. M. Electa Gilbert, in the 

Ames Tribune, January 3, 1918. 
Noble Work of Iowa Pioneer Missionaries, in the Osceola Sentinel, 

January 3, 1918. 
From Blue to Khaki, in the Osceola Sentinel, January 3, 1918. 
Ages of Soldiers in Civil War, in the Atlantic News-Telegraph, 

January 3, 1918. 

Sanitary Fairs of 1864, by George Gallamo, in the Sioux City 

Journal, January 5, 1918. 
Iowa in the Mexican War, in the Mason City Times, January 6, 


Iowa is Seventy-one Years Old, in the Burlington Hawk-Eye, Jan- 
uary 6, 1918. 

Governor Boies Ninety Years Old, in the Atlantic News-Telegraph, 
January 8, 1918. 

Early Days on the Illinois Central, in the Storm Lake Register, 
January 10, 1918. 



An Indian "War, in the Carroll Herald^ January 10, 1918. 

The World War vs. the Civil War, in the Nevada Bepresmtative, 

January 11, 1918. 
Effigy Mounds in Iowa, in the Boone News-Bepublican, January 11, 


Blizzard in 1888, in the Storm Lake Tribune, January 11, 1918. 
Keokuk Women Were Prominent in Relief Work During Civil War, 

in the Keokuk Gate-City, January 11, 1918. 
Sanitary Fair at Dubuque, in the Dubuque Times-Journal, January 

13, 1918. 

Tributes to the late James A. Smith, in the Marshalltown Times- 

Bepublican, January 14, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of James A. Smith, in the Northwood Anchor, 

January 16, 1918. 
Market Prices in 1897, in the Boyal Banner, January 17, 1918. 
Reminiscences of Early Day Logging in Iowa, by Robert Quigley, 

in the Decorah Bepublican, January 17, 1918. 
Storm of January 12, 1888, in the Eldora Herald, January 17, 1918. 
The Frontier Sketches, running in the Burlington Post. 
Location of Boundary Line Between Scott and Clinton Counties, in 

the Clinton Advertiser, January 22, 1918. 
An Allamakee County Quilt of Civil War Times, in the Waukon 

Republican, January 23, 1918. 
Early Newspapers in Iowa, in the Winterset Madisonian, January 

23, 1918. 

Life in Iowa in Early Days, by Mary E. King, in the Sioux City 
Journal, January 23, 1918. 

Old Fort Madison, by Jacob Van der Zee, in the Clinton Herald, 
January 26, 28, 29, 30, 31, February 1, 1918. 

Walnut Lumber Industry in Iowa, in the Davenport Democrat, 
January 27, 1918. 

Muscatine a Leader in Fairs During Civil War, in the Muscatine 
News-Tribune, January 28, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of John Tanken, in the Fort Dodge Messenger, 
January 29, 1918. 

Early Days in Osceola County, in the Pocahontas Democrat, Janu- 
ary 31, 1918. 



Iowa's Civil War Loan a Failure, in the Davenport Times, Febru- 
ary 1, 1918. 

Women in the Civil War, by Mrs. P. D. Swick, in the Boone Inde- 
pendent, February 1, 1918. 

Memories of the Storm of January 12, 1888, by W. W. Carlton, in 
the Charles City Press, February 2, 1918. 

Conditions in Iowa During Civil War, in the Mt. Vernon Record, 
February 6, 1918. 

Early History of Charles City, in the Charles City Press, February 
8, 1918. 

William Battin, Last of the Early Judges, in the Marshalltown 

Times-Bepuhlican, February 9, 1918. 
The Story of the Town of Humboldt, in the Fort Dodge Messenger 

and Chronicle, February 11, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of Robert W. Shields of Washington, in the 

Burlington Hawk-Eye, February 19, 1918. 
Prices No-w and During the Civil War, in the Davenport Times, 

February 22, 1918. 
History of Washington Township, by Peter Mulvaney, in the Eldon 

Forum, February 21, 28, March 7, 1918. 
Iowa State University Bom and Christened in War, in the Iowa 

City Citizen, February 25, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of F. W. Harwood, in the West Union Gazette, 

February 27, 1918. 
Comparison of Prices During Civil War and at Present, in the • 

Waterloo Times-Tribune, February 27, 1918. 
Reminiscences of a Pioneer, by Mrs. L. G. Clute, in the Manchester 

Press, February 28, 1918. 
The State University of Iowa and the Civil War, in the Clinton 

Herald, February 28, March 1, 2, 4, 1918. 
Reminiscences of Spring Valley Creek, in the Le Mars Sentinel, 

March 1, 1918. 

Folder of Teachers' Institute in 1860, in the Cedar Falls Record, 
March 2, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Esther Ridley, First White Woman in Emmet 
County, in the Estherville Democrat, March 6, 1918. 


Sketch of the life of Newton Whitehead, in the Lake City News, 
March 7, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Captain V. P. Twomhly, in the Keosauqua 

Republican, March 7, 1918. 
Early Days in Iowa, by J. R. Buttolph, in the Boone Independent, 

March 8, 1918. 

Historic Spots in Iowa, in the Atlantic News-Telegraph, March 9, 

Sketch of the life of Orvis H. Coon, in the Des Moines Capital, 
March 14, 1918. 

Early Settlement of Mahaska County, in the Oshaloosa Herald, 
March 18, 1918. 

County Seat Contest in Mahaska County, in the Oshaloosa Herald, 
March 20, 1918. 

How the County Seat of Cedar County Came to be Called Tipton, 

in the Tipton Conservative, March 20, 1918. 
A Marion County Pioneer's Tribute to Iowa, by W. H. H. Barker, 

in the Knoxville Express, March 20, 1918. 
Early Days in Iowa, in the Pilot Mound Leader, March 21, 1918. 
Early Days in Albia, by Henry Wallace, in the Albia News, March 

21, 1918. 

The Black Hawk War, by Jacob Van der Zee, in the Clinton Her- 
ald, March 26, 27, 30, 1918. 

The Story of Antoine LeClaire, in the Davenport Democrat, March 
28, 1918. 



The November number of the Minnesota History Bulletin is de- 
voted to Ole Bynmngs True Account of America, edited with intro- 
duction and notes by Theodore C. Blegen. 

The Indiana Magazine of History for March opens with an arti- 
cle on Topenhee and the Decline of the Pottawattomie Nation, by 
Elmore Barce. There is also a continuation of J. Edward Murr's 
interesting study of Lincoln in Indiana. 

Bulletin No, 9 issued by the Michigan Historical Commission 
contains the prize essays written by pupils of Michigan in the local 
history contest for 1916-1917. 

The Historical Society of New Mexico has published a pamphlet 
containing a Historical Sketch of Governor William Carr Lane, 
together with a diary of his journey from St. Louis to Santa Pe in 
the summer of 1852, with annotations by Ralph E. Twitchell. 

Some Anthropological Misconceptions, by John R. Swanton; and 
The American Zodiac, by Stansbury Hagar, are among the articles 
in the October-December number of the American Anthropologist. 

Number twenty-eight of the Filson Cluh Publications consists of 
a monograph on The Kentucky River Navigation, by Mary Ver- 
hoeff. Following an introductory chapter the subject is discussed 
under the headings of river commerce, the beginnings of river com- 
merce, commerce in its relation to river improvements, and moun- 
tain traffic. The work is illustrated by numerous cuts which add 
much to the interest of the volume. 

An appreciation of Hon. Joseph Hodges Choate,\yy Charles E. 
Rushmore, and a more extended biographical sketch by Josiah C. 

VOL. XVI — 20 



Pumpelly, may be found in the January number of The New York 
Genealogical and Biographical Record. 

Some Notes on Zuni, by Elsie Clews Parsons, are published in 
two parts in the July-September and October-December numbers 
of the Memoirs of the American Anthropological Association. 

In the January number of The Wisconsin Archeologist there is 
an illustrated account of the Indian Remains in Door County, by 
J. P. Schumacher. 

Numbers twenty-one and twenty-two of the Bulletin of Informa- 
tion published by the Arkansas History Commission are combined, 
and are devoted to an Outline of Constitution Making in the United 
States with bibliographical notes. There is also a list of references 
arranged alphabetically by authors. 

Among the papers in volume eleven of the Historical Records 
and Studies published by the United States Catholic Historical 
Society are the following : American Catholic History and Religion, 
by Richard H. Tiemey ; The Beginning of Notre Dame, by Matthew 
J. Walsh ; Catholic Signers of the Constitution, by John G. Coyle ; 
and The ^'Marcus Whitman Myth'' and the Missionary History of 
Oregon, by Louis A. Langie. 

The Lenni Lenape or Delaware Indians is the subject of an ad- 
dress by Edwin Robert Walker which is printed in the October 
number of the Proceedings of the New Jersey Historical Society. 

Mrs. Sallie Ward Downs, by Mrs. Ella Hutchison Ellwanger; 
an address by Rev. William Stanley delivered before a reunion of 
Confederate veterans in 1908; and Annapolis, by R. S. Cotterill 
and Eloise Somerlatt, are among the articles in the January num- 
ber of The Register of the Kentucky State Historical Society. 

The October-December number of the Quarterly Publication of 
the Historical and Philosophical Society of Ohio contains the an- 
nual report of the society. In the January-March number may be 
found some Selections from the William Greene Papers, edited by 
L. B. Hamlin. 



An article by T. C. Elliott on The Log of H. M. 8. ''Chatham'' 
is the initial contribution in The Quarterly of the Oregon Historical 
Society for December. The Pioneer Characters of Oregon Progress 
is the title given to some selected writings of the late Harvey W. 
Scott, who for forty years was editor of the excellent newspaper 
known as the Oregonian, published at Portland, Oregon. Finally, 
there is an appendix to Fred W. Powell's study of Hall Jackson 
Kelley — Prophet of Oregon. 

Some documents relative to The Library Company of Baltimore 
occupy the opening pages in the Maryland Historical Magazine for 
December. Some interesting advertisements of the year 1792 are 
printed under the heading of Professional Publicity. Other docu- 
mentary material is to be found in the remaining pages. 

Constitutional Convention of 1868, by Eugene Cypert ; Narrative 
of a Journey in the Prairie, by Albert Pike; The Constitutional 
Convention of 1874 — Reminiscences, by J. W. House j The Arkan- 
sas History Commission — A Review of its Work, by Dallas T. 
Herndon; John Pope — An Unfinished Sketch, by U. M. Rose; 
What was Hernando de Soto's Route Through Arkansas?, by Ada 
Mixon; Price's Campaign of 1861, by N. B. Pearce; Arkansas and 
the Jesuits in 1727 — A Translation, by W. A. Falconer; and 
Arkansas Mounds, by Edward Palmer, are among the contributions 
in volume four of the Publications of the Arkansas Historical Asso- 
ciation, edited by John Hugh Reynolds. 

The Egyptian Ushebtis Belonging to the New-York Historical 
Society are described by Caroline L. Ransom in the January num- 
ber of the Quarterly Bulletin of the New- York Historical Society. 
There is also a biographical sketch of Thomas J. Bryan — the First 
Art Collector and Connoisseur of New York City, by John E. 

H. A. Trexler contributes the first of a series of articles on 
Missouri-Montana Highways in the January number of The Mis- 
souri Historical Review. The Missouri River route is discussed in 
this paper. There is a continuation of Gottfried Duden's ''Report" 


1824-1827 y translated by William G. Bek. There is another article 
by Floyd C. Shoemaker on Missouri and the War; while in the 
third article in his series on Missourians Abroad Ivan H. Epperson 
sketches the dramatic career of George Creel, who is at present 
Chairman of the National Committee on Public Information. 

A new periodical, known as the Western Pennsylvania Historical 
Magazine, was launched in January by the Historical Society of 
Western Pennsylvania. Among the contributions is an article on 
The Trial of Mamachtaga, a Delaware Indian, the First Person 
Convicted of Murder West of the Alleghawy Mountains, by Hugh 
H. Brackenridge. There is also a note concerning the records of 
the Pittsburgh Sanitary Fair of 1864. 

The opening contribution in The Southwestern Historical Quar- 
terly for January is a study of The Government of Austin's Colony, 
1821-1831, by Eugene C. Barker. The Besidencia in the Spanish 
Colonies is the subject discussed by Charles H. Cunningham ; and 
Florence E. HoUaday writes on The Powers of the Commander 
Trans-Mississippi Department, 1863-1865. Eugene C. Barker is 
the editor of the Minutes of the Ayuntamiento of San Felipe de 
Austin, 1828-1832. 

Lafayette's Visit to New Orleans, is the title of a short paper by 
Henry Renshaw which occupies first place in The Louisiana His- 
torical Quarterly for September, 1917. About seventy pages are 
devoted to Notes hihliographiques et raisonnes sur les principaux 
Ouvrages Puhlies sur la Floride et I'Ancienne Louisiane, prepared 
by L. Boimare, with an introduction by Grace King. Of special 
interest is a lengthy paper on General James Wilkinson, by his 
great-grandson, James Wilkinson. 

Nevada — Historic and Prehistoric, by Robert L. Fulton ; Nevada 
in History and Prophecy, by George Wharton James; Mementos 
of Nevada's Olden Days and the Work of the Nevada Historical 
Society, by Jeanne Elizabeth Wier; Mark Twain's Relation to 
Nevada and to the West, by Jeanne Elizabeth Wier; A Faithful 
Account of the Last Indian Uprising in Nevada, by Fannie Mayer 



Bangs; Special Legislation in Nevada, as Illustrated hy the Laws 
of 1913, by Clara Q. Smith Beatty; and Religious Development in 
Nevada, by Alice Frances Trout, are among the contributions in 
the Nevada Historical Society Papers, 1913-1916. 

Among the papers in the Annual Report of the American His- 
torical Association for the year 1915 are the following: Economic 
Causes of International Rivalries and Wars in Ancient Greece, 
by William S. Ferguson; East German Colonization in the Middle 
Ages, by James W. Thompson ; America and European Diplomacy 
to 1648, by Frances G. Davenport; The Social Revolution of the 
Eighteenth Century in South America, by Bernard Moses; Sea 
Power: The Decisive Factor in our Struggle for Independence, by 
French E. Chadwick; Some New Marshall Sources, by Albert J. 
Beveridge; and two papers on Nationalism, by Edward Krehbiel 
and William T. Laprade. 

Carl Schurz in Michigan, by Edward G. Holden ; Indian Legends 
of Northern Michigan, by John C. Wright; History of the Equal 
Suffrage Movement in Michigan, by Karolena M. Fox ; Coming of 
the Italians to Detroit, by John C. Vismara; Father 3Iarquette at 
Michilimachinac, by Edwin 0. Wood; Congregationalism as a Fac- 
tor in the Making of Michigan, by John P. Sanderson; Historical 
Sketch of the University of Detroit, by William T. Doran; and 
The Factional Character of Early Michigan Politics, by Floyd B. 
Streeter, are articles in the January number of the Michigan His- 
tory Magazine. 

Volume eight of the Contributions to the Historical Society of 
Montana, published at Helena by the Montana Historical and Mis- 
cellaneous Library, contains much valuable material relative to the 
history of that State and the surrounding region. Nearly half of 
the volume is taken up with portions of the Bradley Manuscript 
whi6h contains short discussions of Indian affairs, the fur trade, 
and early settlements, the longest article 'being a description of the 
Yellowstone Expedition of 1874. Among the numerous other arti- 
cles and papers which the volume contains are the following: 
Holding up a Territorial Legislature, by Martin Barrett; Mon- 


tana's Pioneer Courts^ by W. Y. Pem'berton ; Pioneer Lumbering in 
Montana^ by A. M. Holter; Captain Townsend's Battle on the 
Powder River, by David B. "Weaver; and Montana's Early History, 
by Mrs. W. J. Beal. 

The opening contribution in The American Historical Review 
for January is the presidential address on The Editorial Function 
in United States History read by Worthington C. Ford before the 
American Historical Association at Philadelphia last December. 
American Rule in Mexico is the subject of an interesting paper by 
Justin H. Smith. The Newspaper Problem in its Bearing Upon 
Military Secrecy During the Civil War, by James G. Randall, is 
another article of special pertinence at the present time. Finally, 
The End of the Alliance of the Emperors is the subject discussed by 
Serge Goriainov. The documents in this number consist of some 
letters from Andrew J. Donelson, American Minister in Berlin, 
relative to the revolution of March, 1848. 

An interesting article on Alaska Whaling, by Clarence L. An- 
drews, occupies the opening pages in The Washington Historical 
Quarterly for January. There is another installment of the jour- 
nals describing David Thompson's Journeys in the Spokane Coun- 
try, edited by T. C. Elliott. Victor J. Farrar presents his annual 
survey of the Pioneer and Historical Societies of the State of Wash- 
ington. There is also a continuation of Edmond S. Meany's valu- 
able study of the Origin of Washington Geographic Names. Among 
the documents there is a letter written by Governor Isaac I. Stevens 
in 1853, relative to government land surveys in Washington Ter- 

In the Transactions of the Illinois State Historical Society for 
the Year 1916 there appear the following papers: The First Two 
Counties of Ulinois and their People, by Fred J. Kerr ; The Devel- 
opment of the Veto Power of the Governor of Illinois, by N. H. 
Debel ; The Indian History of Illinois, by Ralph Linton ; Oddities 
in Early Illinois Laws, by Joseph J. Thompson; Early Presby- 
terianism in East Central Illinois, by Ira W. Allen ; Sixty Years in 
Chicago, by William J. Onahan; Slavery or Involuntary Servitude 



in Illinois Prior to and After its Admission as a State, by 0. W. 
Aldrich ; and The Fox River of Illinois, by J. P. Steward. 

Among the papers in The History Teachers' Magazine for Janu- 
ary are the following: America's Debt to England, by Lucius B. 
Swift; The War and the Teaching of History, by Howard C. 
Hill; The Power of Ideals in History, by Daniel C. Knowlton; 
and The United States and World Politics, 1793-1815, by 
Theodore C. Smith. There is also a very useful Topical Outline of 
the War, prepared by Samuel B. Harding. In the February num- 
ber among the contributions is a paper on The Monroe Doctrine and 
the War, by Carl Becker. The March number contains the follow- 
ing articles, among others : The Bases of Permanent Peace, by Carl 
C. Eckhardt; The International Mind in the Teaching of History, 
by Mary Sibley Evans; Celebrating Memorial Day, by Eugene 
Barker; and The Interaction of European and American Politics, 
1823-1861, by Evarts B. Greene. In this number there is also A 
Selected Critical Bibliography of Publications in English Relating 
to the World War, by George M. Dutcher. 

The latest volume of the Publications of the Mississippi His- 
torical Society, edited by Dunbar Rowland, is the first volume in a 
new series to be known as the Centenary Series. About two-thirds 
of the volume is occupied by a monograph by J. S. McNeily entitled 
From Organization to Overthrow of Mississippi's Provisional Gov- 
ernment, 1865-1868. Another lengthy contribution is a history of 
Walthall's Brigade, by E. T. Sykes. Shorter articles are: Missis- 
sippi Colonial Population and Land Grants, by Mrs. Dunbar Row- 
land; History of Company *^C" Second Mississippi Regiment, 
Spanish-American War, by James Malcolm Robertshaw; Colonel 
George Strother Ganis and Other Pioneers in Mississippi Territory, 
by George J. Lef twich ; James Lockhart Antry, by James M. Greer ; 
and Some Main Traveled Roads, Including Cross-sections of 
Natchez Trace, by George J. Leftwich. 

The Wisconsin Magazine of History for December opens with an 
address by Carl Russell Fish entitled The Frontier a World Prob- 
lem. George Manierre presents some Early Recollections of Lake 


Geneva (Big Foot Lake), Wisconsin. Ole Knudsen Nattestad's 
Description of a Journey to North America, originally published in 
1839, is here reprinted, with a foreword by Rasmus B. Anderson. 
Among the answers to queries printed in this number are notes on 
Daniel Weibster's Wisconsin investments, the discovery of Lake 
Superior, and the Indian tribes of Iowa. The March number con- 
tains the following articles : A Wisconsin Woman's Picture of Presi- 
dent Lincoln, by Cordelia A. P. Harvey, who describes her inter- 
view with President Lincoln in the effort to secure northern hospi- 
tals for the wounded soldiers in the western armies; The Dutch 
Settlements of Shehoygan County, by Sipko F. Rederus; and 
Lucius G. Fisher's Pioneer Recollections of Beloit and Southern 
Wisconsin, edited by Milo M. Quaife. 

President Lincoln and the Illinois Radical Republicans is the 
title of an article by Arthur C. Cole which opens the March num- 
ber of The Mississippi Valley Historical Review. Lawrence H. 
Gipson is the author of a paper on The Collapse of the Confeder- 
acy; Homer C. Hockett discusses The Influence of the West on the 
Rise and Fall of Political Parties; and Theodore C. Blegen de- 
scribes A Plan for the Union of British North America and the 
United States, 1866. In a brief discussion of American historical 
periodicals Augustus H. Shearer makes the following statement: 
^'To the west belongs the credit of the first state magazine of his- 
tory, and to the newer west, too. This was the Iowa state historical 
society's Annals, which began in 1863." There is also a letter 
written by W. S. Gilman in 1837 describing the Alton riot. 

In Memoriam — Clarence S. Paine is a brief tribute by John L. 
Webster which is appropriately given first place in volume eighteen 
of the Publications of the Nebraska State Historical Society, edited 
by Albert Watkins. The volume contains the proceedings of the 
Society at its annual meetings from 1909 to 1916, inclusive. Be- 
sides biographical sketches of James B. Kitchen, Jefferson H. 
Broady, and Lorenzo Crounse, there are the following brief his- 
torical papers: Acknowledging God in Constitutions, by William 
Murphy; Nebraska Reminiscences, by William M. D. French; The 



Bural Carrier of 1849, by John K. Sheen; and Trailing Texas Long- 
horn Cattle Through Nebraska, by James H. Cook. Three more 
extensive monographs occupy aJbont one-third of the volume, name- 
ly : Neapolis, Near-Capital, by Albert Watkins ; Controversy in the 
Senate over the Admission of Nebraska, by John Lee Webster; and 
How Nebraska was Brought into the Union, by Albert Watkins. 
In the last two articles there are numerous references to the atti- 
tude of James W. Grimes, Samuel J. Kirkwood, James Harlan, 
James F. Wilson, and other Iowa men in Congress. 


The Oregon Historical Society has recently moved into fireproof 
quarters in the new Auditorium of the City of Portland. 

The eleventh annual meeting of the Mississippi Valley Historical 
Association will be held at St. Paul on May 9th to 11th. It is 
planned that the formal dedication of the new building of the 
Minnesota Historical Society will take place at the same time. 

Dr. Clarence W. Bowen, who for over thirty-three years was 
treasurer of the American Historical Association, retired from that 
office at the annual meeting of the Association last December. 

The State Historical Society of Missouri held its annual meeting 
at Columbia on January 8th. Especial interest was attached to this 
meeting because it was on January 8, 1818, that Missouri's first 
petition for statehood was presented in Congress. 

Among the interesting documents in the possession of the Madrid 
Historical Society is an order dated at lowaville, May 14, 1853, 
entitling one Seth Graham to two shares of stock in the Des Moines 
Steam Boat Company. The president of this company was A. E. D. 
Bousquet, and the secretary was George W. Hoover. 


Dr. Ivan L. Pollock, formerly a member of the research staff of 
the Society and the author of several monographs published by the 


Society, took up a position with the War Trade Board in "Washing- 
ton, D. C, early in February. 

A volume on Old Fort SnelUng, 18 19-1858 , written by Marcus L. 
Hansen, will be distributed to the members and official depositories 
of the Society in the near future. 

Mr. Thomas Teakle, the author of a number of monographs which 
have been published by the Society, read a paper before the Abigail 
Adams Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution at 
Des Moines early in April. His subject was ''The Romance of the 
History of Iowa". 

Two pamphlets in the series entitled Iowa and War which were 
published in February and March, respectively, are: The State 
University of Iowa and the Civil War, by Mrs. Ellen M. Rich, re- 
printed from The Iowa Historical Record for January, 1899 ; and 
The Black Hawk War, by Jacob Van der Zee. 

Mr. Cyril B. Upham, who has been a member of the research 
staff of the Society during the past two summers, left Iowa City 
early in April to enter upon a course of training in connection with 
the aviation service. Mr. Upham has recently completed the re- 
quirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at the State 
University of Iowa. 

The following persons have recently been elected to membership 
in the Society: Mr. H. E. Bowman, Little Rock, Iowa; Mr. Wm. M. 
Deacon, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Mr. S. R. Ingham, New York City; 
Mr. Carl E. Nord, Sioux City, Iowa; Mr. Frank A. O'Connor, New 
Hampton, Iowa; Hon. T. J. Steele, Sioux City, Iowa; Mr. J. R. 
Weber, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Mr. Harry T. Hedges, Cedar Rapids, 
Iowa; Mr. E. M. Warner, Muscatine, Iowa; Mr. C. F. Chambers, 
West Union, Iowa; and Dr. L. L. Myers, Iowa City, Iowa. Mr. 
Henry S. Nollen of Des Moines, Iowa, has been enrolled as a life 
member of the Society. 


A ''pioneer park" of about twelve acres at Champoeg, Oregon, 
where the provisional government was established in 1843, has been 
purchased through private funds and donated to the State. A me- 
morial building will also be erected on the site out of funds appro- 
priated by the State legislature. 

Franklin Paine Mall, head of the department of anatomy at 
Johns Hopkins University and one of the most eminent anatomists 
of the country, died late in November, 1917. Dr. Mall was born at 
Belle Plaine, Iowa, on September 28, 1862. 

A newspaper item indicates that a seventh edition of Mrs. Abbie 
Gardner Sharp 's History of the Spirit Lake Massacre will be pub- 
lished in the near future. 

Bernard Murphy, who was editor of the Vinton Eagle for more 
than forty years, passed away on February 28, 1918. He was born 
in Massachusetts on September 24, 1847. From 1901 to 1906 he 
was State Printer of Iowa. 

It is said that a farm bureau has been organized in each of the 
ninety-nine counties of Iowa, and that county agents have been 
employed in about two-thirds of the counties. 

William Battin, who was one of the six county judges of Marshall 
County, died at his home in Marshalltown on February 8th. Mr. 
Battin was bom in Ohio in 1832, came to Iowa in 1856, and in 1859 
he was elected to the position of county judge which he held during 
a stormy period in the history of Marshall County. 

The Hawk-Eye Natives, an association of pioneers, held its an- 
nual reunion at Burlington on February 22nd, with Mr. W. H. 
Grupe as the presiding officer. 



Voltaire P. Twombly, who was Treasurer of State of Iowa from 
1885 to 1891, died at his home in Des Moines on February 24, 1918. 
He was born near Farmington, Van Buren County, Iowa, on Feb- 
ruary 21, 1842. He served with bravery during the entire period 
of the Civil War, and is best known as the color-bearer of the Sec- 
ond Iowa Infantry. In that capacity he had the honor of carrying 
the first Union flag across the ramparts of Fort Donelson. 

Following the precedent established last year "Foundation Day" 
was celebrated at the State University of Iowa on February 25th. 
The principal address was delivered by President Laenas G. Weld 
of Pullman Institute, Chicago. There were also brief addresses by 
President Walter A. Jessup, Professor Benj. F. Shambaugh, Cap- 
tain Percy Bordwell, and Professor Arthur C. Trowbridge. 

James A. Smith of Osage, who had a long record of service in the 
General Assembly of Iowa (two sessions in the House of Repre- 
sentatives and eight sessions in the Senate), died in Pasadena, Cali- 
fornia, early in January. Senator Smith was bom in New York 
State on February 4, 1851, and came to Iowa at the age of eighteen. 
After being engaged in civil engineering for several years he went 
into the mercantile business, and later took up the lumber business 
in which he was very successful. During his legislative career he 
always gave his support to progressive measures. For several years 
he was a trustee of Grinnell College. 


The following data relative to the life and services of the late 
Henry Sabin was furnished by President Homer H. Seerley of the 
Iowa State Teachers' College: 

Henry Sabin was born in Pomfret, Windham County, Connecti- 
cut, on October 23, 1829 ; and died at Chula Vista, California, on 
March 22, 1918. He was the son of Noah Sabin, a farmer, and 
Betsey Cleveland-Sabin. He prepared for college at Woodstock 
Academy, Connecticut, and at eighteen entered Amherst College, 
graduating in 1852. Soon afterward he took up teaching as a life 
work. He was in charge of the Union School at Naugatuck, Con- 



necticut, for five years, and then became owner and principal of the 
Collegiate Institute at Matawan, New Jersey. In 1864 he became 
principal of the Eaton Grammar School in New Haven, Connecti- 
cut ; and he came to Clinton, Iowa, as superintendent of city schools 
in 1870. 

Mr. Sabin at once assumed leadership in the solving of problems 
of public school education in Iowa, being prominent on the plat- 
form and through his executive work rendering notable service in 
the common schools of the State. He was President of the Iowa 
State Teachers' Association in 1878, and gave an address on that 
occasion that was long the model of educational addresses from the 
standpoint of literary form and masterly eloquence. Among his 
addresses was one on Education and the State" and another on 
''The Children of Crime", that were notable contributions to edu- 
cational literature. From 1888 to 1892 and from 1894 to 1898 he 
was the highly esteemed Superintendent of Public Instruction fbr 
Iowa, during which eight years by addresses in Iowa and through- 
out the Nation he established a reputation that made Iowa notable 
in educational thought, practice, and development. 

He was president of the department of superintendence of the 
National Education Association in 1895, and was an effective mem- 
ber of the National Council for many years. His most notable 
contribution to educational progress was his report as chairman of 
the Committee of Twelve on Rural Schools. This report is still the 
compendium on rural education problems and practice in the United 
States and thus far it has no successor or superior in its vision, 
scope, or conclusions. This report he edited and much of it he wrote 
from his own experience and judgment, giving to the State much 
distinction through his identification as a citizen and chief educa- 
tional officer. 

After retiring from the office of Superintendent of Public In- 
struction, he organized and maintained a reliable teachers' ex- 
change in partnership with his elder son; wrote books; delivered 
addresses; and carried on an extensive personal correspondence, 
writing nearly all of these professional letters of friendship and 
good-will in his own hand. His best known books are The Making 


of Iowa, an historical treatise prepared in connection with his 
younger son; and Talks to Young People, consisting of advisory 
and affectionate addresses originally given to the high school boys 
and girls of Clinton, Iowa. 

Mr. Sabin married Esther F. Hutchins in Naugatuck, Connecti- 
cut. Four children were bom to them, of whom two are living: 
Elbridge H. Sabin, author, lawyer and ranchman; and Edwin L. 
Sabin, author — both residents of California. He was a devoted 
member of the Episcopal Church and was a man of sterling char- 
acter and unchallenged faith in truth and righteousness. To have 
known him personally was a constant blessing and to be his friend 
and correspondent was a benediction of inspiration and confidence. 
His years were full of realizations and noble aims and his concep- 
tions of life in his active years were always the highest and best. 



Eakl Stanfield Fullbkook, Fellow in Sociology at the 
State University of Iowa. Bom in South Dakota in 1892. 
Graduated from Momingside College in 1914. Engaged for 
two years in social work in Sioux City. Received the degree 
of Master of Arts at the State University of Iowa in February, 
1918. Author of Sanitary Fairs — a Method of Raising Funds 
for Belief Work in Iowa During the Civil War. 

Joseph W. Rich, Member of the Board of Curators of The 
State Historical Society of Iowa. (See The Iowa Journal of 
History and Politics for January, 1908, p. 159.) 



Iowa Journal 


Hi storj^and Politics 

JULY 1918 

Entered December {6 lfliQ2 tkt lowii City Iowa as second-class matter under act of Congress oi July 19 1804 

Associate Editor, DAN E. CLARK 

Vol XVI JULY 1918 No. 3 


Frontier Defense in Iowa, 1850-1865 

Ban Elbert Clark 315 
The Ages of the Soldiers in the Gi\ril War W. W. Gist 387 

The Influence of Wheat and Cotton on Anglo-American 
Relations During the Civil War 

Louis Bernard Schmidt 400 

Some Publications . . ... 440 

Western Americana . . 443 
lowana , 

Historical Societies ,454 

Notes and Comment . 464 

Contributors 4fi7 

Copyright 1918 by The State Historical Society of Iowa 


Published Quarteuly 
at x0w4. city 


Address all Communications io 
The Stati HiSToiucAt Society Iowa Cmr Iowa 



VOL XVI — 21 



There are two distinct phases or periods in the history 
of frontier defense in Iowa. First there was the period 
ending about 1848 when military measures were taken 
largely for the purpose of protecting the Indians against 
the encroachments of white settlers on their lands, against 
exploitation by traders and whiskey-sellers, or against at- 
tacks by other hostile Indian tribes. With the exception of 
Fort Madison, all the early military posts in Iowa were 
established primarily for these reasons.^ Incidentally they 
served to impress the Indians with the power of the United 
States government and to restrain them from molesting 
the settlers. 

Eastern Iowa was settled very rapidly. Settlers came in 
such large numbers each year that even the Indians could 
see the folly of hostility when the odds were so overwhelm- 
ingly against them. Treaty followed treaty in rapid suc- 
cession and within a few years the Sac and Fox Indians 
ceded all their claims to land in Iowa. Whatever may be 
said of the influences which led to the making of these 
treaties with the Sacs and Foxes, it is evident that the gov- 
ernment endeavored to carry out its promises in good faith. 
Until the Indians were removed entirely from the State 
they remained in close proximity to the settlements, where 
they needed protection far more than did the settlers. 

The defense of the frontier against the Sioux Indians 

1 For a discussion of the establishment and history of the early forts see 
Van der Zee's Forts in the Iowa Country in The Iowa Journal of History 
AND Politics, Vol. XII, pp. 163-204. 



during the period from 1850 to about 1865, however, had an 
entirely different aspect. The Sioux were the most warlike 
of the tribes living in the region of the Iowa country. For 
years they had waged war against neighboring tribes ; and 
they stubbornly opposed the advance of the white people. 
Into the country that had previously been their hunting- 
grounds the settlers came at first in small numbers, with 
inadequate protection. For many years along this frontier 
the Sioux were numerically equal or superior to the white 
settlers, and they had little cause to fear punishment for 
any depredations they might commit. 

It must be admitted that as time went on the Sioux had 
ample provocation for resentment and hostility toward the 
whites. The story of official and private dealings with the 
Sioux Indians is one which no American can read with 
pride. But the fact remains, so far as Iowa is concerned, 
that in 1851 representatives of these Indians ceded a tract 
of land which included all the remaining territory to which 
they laid claim in this State. After that time they had no 
rights in Iowa, while the settlers had every reason to expect 
protection against annoyance or molestation by the red- 
skins. The Sioux, however, continued to visit their old 
haunts, and some of the more lawless bands committed dep- 
redations upon the settlers of varying degrees of serious- 
ness. The problem of frontier defense in Iowa from 1850 
to 1865, therefore, had to do with the protection of the lives 
and property of the white settlers, rather than with safe- 
guarding the rights of the Indians. 


After 1846 adventuresome settlers began to push their 
way into north-central Iowa along the valleys of the Cedar, 
Iowa, and Des Moines rivers. Their coming was eyed with 


displeasure by bands of Sioux warriors, who bad roamed 
almost at will over that region even after their chiefs had 
signed treaties giving up all claim to it. Nor was there 
any effective agency near at hand to restrain them in their 
efforts to discourage these intruders from occupying their 
ancient hunting-grounds. Fort Des Moines, at the Raccoon 
Forks, was abandoned in 1846; and although there were 
State troops among the Winnebagoes at Fort Atkinson in 
northeastern Iowa until 1849, this garrison was apparently 
little feared by the Sioux. 

In the summer of 1849 while James M. Marsh was en- 
gaged in surveying a correction line westward toward the 
Missouri Eiver, he and his party were met near the site of 
the present city of Fort Dodge by ^'a band of eleven Sioux 
warriors completely armed. ' ' Although the Indians at first 
rushed upon the surveyors with every evidence of hostile 
intentions, they quickly changed their attitude, manifested 
friendship, and soon departed. Marsh continued with his 
surveying. Within a short time, however, the Indians 
again appeared. With warlike demonstrations they or- 
dered Marsh to stop work, unharness his teams, and go into 

Marsh's party consisted of seven men, unarmed: re- 
sistance was out of the question. After camping, he ex- 
plained to the chief of the band the character of his survey ; 
that it was by authority of the government, and that he was 
upon United States land; of all of which the chief seemed 
aware, for he expressed credence in all that was said and 
seemed perfectly friendly. The Indians stayed overnight 
in his tent, ate supper and breakfast with him, and received 
presents of provisions and clothing. The chief left the 
camp after breakfast ; but no sooner had he gone than the 
other Indians became insolent and appropriated *^to their 


own use everything upon which they could lay their hands, ' ' 
including Marsh's tent, which they cut to pieces. ^^They 
then emptied his wagons, selected his best blankets and such 
other articles as they could pack, and left him. The ensu- 
ing night, however, they returned and openly stole all his 
horses, (nine in number,) and were sitting upon them near 
his camp the next morning. The loss occasioned by this 
unprovoked attack, which was immediately reported to 
Federal authorities, was estimated at not less than fifteen 
hundred dollars.^ 

Settlers in the Boone valley and at other points along the 
frontier were annoyed and robbed by small bands of Sioux 
Indians during this period.^ In 1849 C. H. Booth, the Sur- 
veyor General of Iowa and Wisconsin, in his official report 
called attention to these depredations, and to the defense- 
less condition of this section of the frontier. ^^In view of 
these facts," he said, ^'I respectfully suggest the impor- 
tance of occupying Fort Atkinson with a force of dragoons, 
to awe, and, if necessary, chastise these Indians".^ About 
the same time the Indian Agent at St. Peters reported that 
the 'injuries already committed on the whites . . . . 
call for some redress, and would fully justify the march of 
a sufficient dragoon force to the Iowa frontier to drive them 
[the Sioux] from that country In February, 1850, peti- 
tions from the people of Boone County, Iowa, were pre- 

2 Senate Executive Documents, 1st Session, 31st Congress, Vol. IT, pp. 235, 
242, 243. Most writers have stated that the attack on Marsh was made in 
1848, but the report of the Surveyor General describing the event proves con- 
clusively that it occurred in 1849. 

sWilliam Williams's History of Wehster County, Iowa, in the Annals of 
Iowa, Vol. VII, p. 284. 

4 Senate Executive Documents, 1st Session, 31st Congress, Vol. II, p. 235. 

•'> Senate Executive Documents, 1st Session, 31st Congress, Vol. II, p. 1051. 


sented in Congress, asking for the establishment of a mili- 
tary post at the Lizard Forks of the Des Moines River.^ ■ 


The need of defensive measures against the aggressions 
of the Sioux Indians was thus forcibly brought to the atten- 
tion of the War Department, and prompt action was taken. 
^^For the protection of the frontier settlements of Iowa,'' 
reads an order which was issued from the Adjutant Gen- 
eral's office on May 31, 1850, ^'a new post will be established 
under the direction of the Commander of the 6th Depart- 
ment, on the east bank of the Des Moines, opposite the 
mouth of Lizzard Fork ; or preferably, if an equally eligible 
site can be found, at some point twenty-five or thirty miles 
higher up the Des Moines. The post will be established by 
a company of the 6th Infantry to be drawn from Fort Snell- 
ing, which will for the present constitute its garrison."^ 

Several weeks elapsed before this order reached Brevet 
Brigadier General Newman S. Clarke, Colonel of the Sixth 
Infantry and commander of the Sixth Military Department 
with headquarters at St. Louis. But on July 14th he in 
turn issued an order directing Brevet Major Samuel Woods 
to proceed to the Lizard Fork with Company E of the Sixth 
Infantry for the purpose of constructing and garrisoning 
the military post to be established at that point.^ Major 
Woods was at that time in Iowa with two companies of in- 

^ Journal of the Senate, 1st Session, 31st Congress, p. 164; Journal of the 
Bouse of Eepresentatives, 1st Session, 31st Congress, p. 510. 

In January, 1849, the General Assembly of Iowa adopted a memorial to 
Congress asking that the need of defense on the western frontier of this State 
be taken into consideration in connection with the proposed line of military 
posts for the protection of the route to Oregon and California. — Laws of Iowa, 
1848-1849, p. 203. 

T Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. IV, p. 534. 

» Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. IV, pp. 534, 535. 


fantry and one company of dragoons. Several hundred 
Sac and Fox, Pottawattamie, and other Indians had re- 
turned to Iowa in violation of their treaty obligations and 
were annoying the settlers along the Iowa River, especially 
in the vicinity of Marengo. The three companies under 
Major Woods were therefore detailed to remove these In- 
dians to their reservations beyond the Missouri River.^ 

It was on the last day of July that Major Woods with 
Company E left **Camp Buckner^' on the Iowa River for 
the new post, accompanied by William Williams, who had 
received the appointment as sutler for the garrison. The 
men had no very pleasant anticipations concerning their 
new duties, for such information as they had received led 
them to believe that the upper Des Moines valley was a 
region of lakes and swamps — much like Florida, where 
many of the men had served during the Indian wars. 
Marching was slow and tedious. There were unbridged 
streams to be crossed and sloughs to be avoided, while it 
was difficult to maintain a store of supplies when passing 
through country that was practically uninhabited. It was 
not until August 23rd that the command reached the spot 
where it was proposed to erect the new military post. In 
spite of their earlier misgivings the men found the location 
highly plea sing. 


The troops were at once put to work cutting timber and 
preparing the necessary materials for buildings; and a 
steam sawmill was procured and put into operation. So 
well did the work progress that by the middle of November 

9 See Hansen's Old Fort Snelling 18W-18S8, pp. 41-45. 

10 Williams's History of Webster County, Iowa, in the Annals of Iowa, Vol. 
VIT, p. 285; Carpenter's Major William Williams in the Annals of Iowa (Third 
Series), Vol. II, pp. 147, 148. 


the barracks and other buildings were so nearly completed 
that the troops could fold up their tents and occupy their 
new quarters. No detailed description of this military post 
is available. But from a rough drawing made by William 
Williams it is evident that it consisted of rude barracks 
and officers' quarters arranged in a row, with stables and 
other buildings in the rear. Apparently it was not antici- 
pated that the Indians would become so bold as to attack 
the post, for there was neither blockhouse nor stockade. 
The fort was first named Fort Clarke in honor of Colonel 
Newman S. Clarke of the Sixth Infantry. 

The new post soon became the subject of great interest 
on the part of the people of Dubuque. They fully appreci- 
ated the difficulty of transporting supplies for the fort the 
whole length of the Des Moines valley from Keokuk; and 
they were certain that a military road from Dubuque would 
be of great benefit to the garrison. Accordingly a petition 
containing about thirty-five signatures was sent to the mem- 
bers of the Iowa delegation in Congress, asking them to use 
their influence to secure the establishment of such a road. 
Several individuals also wrote to Senator George W. Jones, 
whose home was at Dubuque, in support of the proposition. 
They pointed out the fact that such a road would materially 
lessen the expense of supplying the fort ; while it would be 
of much benefit to the people of northern Iowa. * ' The trade 
of the upper Des Moines'', added one of these writers, ^4s 
of more importance to Dubuque than a score of railroads to 
Keokuk, in my opinion. 

11 Williams 's History of Webster County, Iowa, in the Annals of Iowa, Vol. 
VII, pp. 285, 289. The drawing referred to is reproduced in Pratt 's History of 
Fort Dodge and Webster County, Iowa, opposite p. 72. 

12 These letters and the petition from Dubuque are to be found in Senate 
Executive Documents, 2nd Session, 31st Congress, Vol. Ill, No. 15. 

Memorials, asking for the establishment of military roads to Fort Clarke 
from Dubuque and Muscatine were adopted hj the General Assembly of Iowa 
on January 14 and February 4, 1851. — Laws of Iowa, 1850-1851, pp. 261, 265, 


Senator Jones introduced a resolution in the Senate, in 
accordance with which the Secretary of War directed that 
an investigation of the proposal be made by Colonel J. J. 
Abert of the Topographical Engineers. On January 7, 
1851, Colonel Abert made a report pointing out the advan- 
tages of a road from Dubuque and recommending that an 
appropriation be made for building such a road.^^ No ac- 
tion was taken, however, and throughout its existence the 
fort was apparently supplied with provisions transported 
up the Des Moines valley. 

On June 25th a general order was issued from army 
headquarters changing the name of the post to Fort Dodge, 
in honor of Henry Dodge and his son, Augustus C. Dodge, 
who were then United States Senators from Wisconsin and 
Iowa, respectively, and who had both been conspicuous for 
their service on the frontier. The principal reason for the 
change of name was the fact that another Fort Clarke had 
recently been established at a point farther west by troops 
belonging to the Sixth Infantry. 

There is nothing in the history of Fort Dodge that is 
unique or dramatic. The garrison, including the soldiers, 
civilian assistants, women, and children, numbered about 
one hundred and twenty persons. Their life was that of 
the typical frontier post. Expeditions were occasionally 
made into the surrounding country. The troops broke up 
ground and raised crops of grain and vegetables. Thirty 
mounted men were always kept in readiness to pursue hos- 
tile Indians or march to any point of threatened danger. 

'i^ Journal of the Senate, 2nfl Session, 31st Congress, pp. 82, 91, 104; Senate 
Executive Documents, 2nd Session, 31st Congress, Vol. Ill, No. 15. 

Senator Jones again brought up this matter at the next session of Congress, 
but with like results. — Journal of the Senate, 1st Session, 32nd Congress, pp. 
87, 115, 318; Senate Executive Documents, 1st Session, 32nd Congress, Vol. 
IV, No. 14. 

^ 4 Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. IV, p. 536. 


The Indians fled from the immediate vicinity of the fort 
upon the arrival of the troops, and several months elapsed 
before they ventured near. As time went on, however, they 
did not hesitate to trouble settlers and hunters, and the 
troops were often sent out to overawe the redskins. ^^In 
the spring of 1852, says one writer, 'Hhey robbed an old 
man by the name of Green and his party who had ventured 
some distance up the Coon Eiver to hunt .... In 
October of [the] same year, 1852, they attacked four fami- 
lies who had settled on Boyer River, about sixty miles south- 
west of the fort, robbed them of all they had, and took with 
them as prisoners a young man and young woman. On 
that occasion we pursued them until we caught two of their 
principal leaders. Ink-pa- do -t ah and Umpa-sho-tah, and 
held them accountable for the return of the persons and 
property. About ten days after [ward] they were brought 

Fort Dodge was never intended as a permanent post. It 
was established as a measure of frontier defense, with the 
expectation that it would soon be abandoned. By 1853 there 
seemed no further danger of Indian attack in the region 
adjoining the fort. Settlers, encouraged by the protection 
afforded by the fort, had come to the vicinity in numbers 
large enough to defend themselves against Indian depre- 
dations. Further to the north and northwest, however, the 
Indians still presented a formidable barrier to settlements ; 
and a military post in that region was deemed more neces- 
sary and advantageous. Consequently, in March an order 
was issued for the abandonment of Fort Dodge and the 
establishment of a new post on the Minnesota River which 
soon came to be known as Fort Ridgely.^^ 

15 Williams 's History of Webster County, Iowa, in the Annals of loiva. Vol. 
VII, pp. 290, 334, 335. See also Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. IV, pp. 
535, 536, for data compiled from materials in the archives at Washington. 
Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. IV, pp. 536, 537. 


Major Woods and the larger part of the garrison of Fort 
Dodge took up the line of march to the new post on April 
18, 1853. A lieutenant and twenty men were left behind to 
dispose of the property of the fort. Most of the buildings 
were purchased at public sale by William Williams, who 
had been the sutler and postmaster at the fort. On June 
2nd the flag was lowered from the staff, and the last troops 
departed. That day marked the end of Fort Dodge as a 
military post ; and William Williams with only a few other 
people remained on the site. Settlers soon took the places 
of the soldiers, however, and there grew up a flourishing 
village retaining the name of the post.^^ 


The abandonment of Fort Dodge as a military post left 
the Iowa frontier without protection. The wandering bands 
of Sioux Indians were bold and venturesome. They were 
good horsemen, and apparently they gave but little thought 
to the troops stationed at the new post far to the north- 
ward on the Minnesota Eiver. Scarcely had the soldiers 
left Fort Dodge when the Indians pitched their tepees in 
the vicinity of the deserted post.^^ From that time forward 
for nearly ten years they were periodically a menace to the 
settlers in northwestern Iowa. 

Depredations became especially numerous during the 
summer of 1854. It must be admitted, however, that the 
redskins did not at this time equal in barbarity an outrage 
committed by a white settler in January of that year. 
Henry Lott, who has been described as **a rough, unscru- 
pulous border character whose legitimate sphere was out- 
side the pale of civilization'', first came in contact with the 

17 Annah of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. IV, pp. 537, 538. 
i« Williams's History of Webster County, Iowa, in the Annals of Iowa, Vol. 
VII, p. 335. 


Sioux Indians in 1846, when he built a cabin and undertook 
to conduct illegal trading operations with them near the 
mouth of the Boone River in Webster County. The Indians 
under the leadership of Sidominadota ordered him to leave, 
and when he did not comply they robbed him, shot his horses 
and cattle, threatened his family, and drove him and his 
stepson from home. 

During the succeeding years, although he moved from 
place to place, Lott seems not to have lost his desire for 
revenge upon the Indians. In the fall of 1853 he moved up 
into Humboldt County and built a cabin on a small tribu- 
tary of the Des Moines Eiver which later was called Lott 's 
Creek. Not far away was the lodge wherein lived Sido- 
minadota and his family. In January, 1854, Lott and his 
stepson treacherously assassinated Sidominadota, and on 
the same night they went to his lodge and murdered six 
members of his family. Lott and his stepson then burned 
their own cabin and fled from the State. When the tragedy 
was discovered the county authorities of Webster County 
conducted a more or less farcical investigation. Although 
there was no doubt as to the perpetrators of the massacre, 
they were too far away to be captured and the crime went 

This event naturally aroused great indignation among 
the Indians; and the settlers were apprehensive lest they 
would seek reprisals. The few settlers daily expected an 
attack. ^^We had to be constantly on the lookout for them, 
and dare not venture out without being well armed'', writes 

19 This account of the murder of Sidominadota is taken largely from 
Teakle's The Spirit Lake Massacre, Ch. IV. 

Many writers take the view that Inkpaduta and Sidominadota were brothers ; 
and that the Spirit Lake Massacre was in large part a result of Inkpaduta 's 
desire to secure revenge for the murder of his brother. Other writers, includ- 
ing Mr. Teakle, do not accept this view. 


Major Williams. The Indians became very sullen and hos- 
tile, and soon after Lott's massacre 'Hhey drove Wm. R. 
Miller and family to the fort for shelter. In March and 
April several new settlers came to the village, while Rob- 
ert Scott and John Scott, who had settled some distance 
below the fort, abandoned their claims and fled to the fort 
from fear of the Indians. By the latter part of April, it 
is said. Fort Dodge could muster a force of about fifteen 
well armed men, and the little settlement felt confident of 
its ability to withstand any probable Indian attack.^*^ 

The scattered settlers living to the northward, however, 
were not so fortunate. Perhaps the fears of the settlers 
were unduly aroused, for it is true that no very serious 
harm was done by the Indians. But there was good reason 
for uneasiness, especially about the middle of the summer, 
when a considerable number of Sioux came into north- 
central Iowa in the hope of securing the scalps of some 
Sacs and Winnebagoes who, they believed, were in that 
region. Near Clear Lake, in the course of an altercation, a 
settler knocked an Indian down with a piece of a broken 
grindstone. By means of gifts the settler ^s wife succeeded 
in pacifying the Indians temporarily. When the news 
reached Clear Lake and Mason City a party of about twen- 
ty-five armed men set out with the intention of driving the 
Indians from the vicinity. Contrary to expectations they 
found the red men peaceably inclined: they returned the 
gifts which they had received from the settler's wife and 
soon left the neighborhood. Nevertheless, it is said that 
* terror seized the settlers and a general retreat occurred 

20 Williams 's History of Webster County, Iowa, in the Annals of Iowa, Vol. 
VIT, pp. 291, 292, 335, 336. 


to the Shell Rock River, near where Nora Springs is lo- 
cated, and a fortified camp was established/ 

The situation on the frontier was sufficiently alarming to 
convince Governor Hempstead that defensive measures 
were necessary. *^In July last,'^ he said in his biennial 
message to the legislature on December 8, 1854, ^^I received 
information from the counties of Cerro Gordo, Floyd, 
Bremer, Chickasaw, Franklin and others, that a large body 
of Indians well armed and equipped, had made demonstra- 
tions of hostilities by fortifying themselves in various 
places, killing stock, and plundering houses, and that many 
of the inhabitants had entirely forsaken their homes and 
left a large portion of their property at the mercy of the 
enemy; praying that a military force might be sent to pro- 
tect them and their settlements. Upon the reception of this 
information, an order was immediately issued to Gen. John 
G. Shields, directing him to call out the City Guards of 
Dubuque, and such other force as might be necessary, not 
exceeding two companies, to remove the Indians from the 
state. This order was promptly obeyed, and the company 
were ready for service, when information was received that 
the Indians had dispersed — that the citizens were return- 
ing to their homes, and quiet had been restored. ' ' 

21 Harvey Ingham's Inlc-pa-du-tah's Eevenge in The Midland Monthly, Vol. 
rV, pp. 271, 272. There are many versions and accounts of this episode which 
has been called the ''Grindstone War". 

The following is a letter to Governor Hempstead, dated ''Head Quarters 
Army of Relief, Masonic Grove, Cerro Gordo County", July 6, 1854: 

"The Citizens of Cerro Gordo, Floyd and adjoining Counties are Greatly 
alarmed by the appearance of a party of Sioux Indians, which have made their 
appearance at or near the Settlement at Clear Lake .... There is now 
Encamped at Masonic Grove about 100 men watching the movements of the 
Indians .... We have no means of ascertaining the precise number of 
Indians which have encamped there, but there have been seen 400 warriors 
which have fortified themselves about 12 miles from the camp of the whites." 
— Correspondence, Miscellaneous, G II, 731, in the Public Archives, Des 



Governor Hempstead also told the legislature that he had 
given Major William Williams of Fort Dodge authority to 
raise a volunteer company for frontier defense in case of 
need. Williams had made an investigation and in Septem- 
ber reported that **he had not found it necessary to raise 
any military force, as there did not then exist any cause for 
alarm''. The Governor, however, recommended that the 
General Assembly should make some provision to the end 
that a military force might be available on the frontier in 
case of emergency .^^ 

Scarcely had these words been written when the appre- 
hensions of the settlers were again raised by the visits of 
Indians, who gave evidence of their intention to spend the 
winter in the vicinity of the settlements — doubtless for the 
purpose of obtaining food. On January 3, 1855, Governor 
James W. Grimes wrote a long letter to the members of 
the Iowa delegation in Congress, asking their cooperation 
in securing protection for the frontier. 

There are at this time large bands of the Yankton and 
Sisseton Sioux in the neighborhood of Fort Dodge, in Web- 
ster county in this State'', wrote the Governor. *'I am 
reliably informed that there are not less than five hundred 
warriors of that tribe in that vicinity. They manifest no 
real hostile intention, but they are accused of stealing hogs, 
cattle, etc. Certain it is, they have occasioned a great deal 
of alarm among the settlers. The people have become im- 
patient for their removal, and many of the most discreet 
men of that region of country are anticipating trouble. ' ' 

Governor Grimes called attention to the fact that he had 
no adequate authority to adopt measures for the protection 
of the settlers. He could call out the militia of the State 

22 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
I, pp. 456-458. 


only in case of insurrection or hostile invasion, and thus far 
the Indians could not be said to have displayed hostile in- 
tentions, have taken the responsibility'', said the Gov- 
ernor, **to appoint Major William Williams of Fort Dodge, 
a kind of executive agent to act for me in protecting both 
the settlers and the Indians, and particularly to preserve 
the peace." But there were no funds which could be used 
to defray any expenses which might be incurred in carrying 
out these objects. He therefore suggested that Major Wil- 
liams should be appointed as a special Indian agent. ^*It is 
greatly feared", continued Grimes, *Hhat when the pro- 
posed military expedition shall march towards the Plains 
to chastise the Sioux for their hostilities near Fort Laramie 
and along the emigrant route to Oregon and California, 
they will attempt to seek shelter within the limits of our 
State. In that event, the presence of such an agent will be 
highly serviceable, if not, indeed, absolutely necessary." 

The settlers in Woodbury, Monona, and Harrison coun- 
ties were also asking for protection against the Omaha and 
Oto Indians who were then east of the Missouri Eiver. 
*^The chief trouble apprehended by the Missouri river citi- 
zens, however," wrote Grimes, *4s from a band of the 
Sioux in the vicinity of Sargent's Bluffs. These Indians 
pretend that they have never parted with their title to sev- 
eral of the north-western counties of our State and avow 
their intention to plant corn within the State in the coming 
spring. ' ' 

In view of all these circumstances the Governor urged 
the Iowa Senators and Eepresentatives to use all their in- 
fluence to secure a remedy of the existing evils. ^^We have 
just cause for complaint", he said. ^^The government has 
undertaken to protect our frontiers from the Indians with 
the assurance that this stipulation would be fulfilled. That 

VOL. XVI — 22 


frontier is filled with peaceful citizens. But the Indians are 
suffered to come among them — destroying their property 
and jeopardizing their lives. ''^^ 

About three weeks later Governor Grimes sent the fol- 
lowing special message to the General Assembly: 

I have received reliable information that large bands of the Sioux 
Indians are now within the limits of this State, and that an in- 
crease of their number is shortly expected. The frontier settle- 
ments are daily liable to molestation and apprehensions are felt in 
many quarters for the safety of our citizens. 

It is known that the General Government is about to dispatch a 
body of troops to the Territories west of Iowa, for the purpose of 
chastising or intimidating this tribe of Indians, or some of their 
confederates, for depredations and hostilities committed in the 
neighborhood of Fort Loramier and along the emigrant route to 
California and Oregon. It is feared that when this expedition shall 
reach the Indian country, they will attempt to find shelter in the 
north west portion of the State and thus the whole confederated 
tribes of the Sioux be precipitated upon our frontier settlements. 

There is no military organization in the State. The Executive 
of the State has no authority under the law, to use either persuasive 
or coercive measures, except in cases of insurrection or actual hos- 
tile invasion. 

I submit to the General Assembly the facts as they have reached 
me, and shall be happy to concur in such measures for safety, as 
their judgment may dictate.--^ 

Although this message received corroboration in petitions 
presented to the legislature,^^ it failed to bring forth any 

23 This letter is printed in full in the Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. 
II, pp. 627-630. 

There is no available data to indicate what response the members of the 
Iowa delegation made to this urgent letter. At any rate they do not seem to 
have been able to impress anyone in Washington with the need for frontier 
defense in Iowa. 

24 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 93, 94. 

25 Journal of the House of Representatives, 1854-1855, p. 413. 


action on the part of the General Assembly, in the direction 
of organizing the militia of the State for frontier defense.^^ 
On the day before Governor Grimes wrote his appeal, how- 
ever, there was approved the following memorial to Con- 
gress : 

Your memorialists, the General Assembly of the State of Iowa, 
respectfully represent that a garrison is much need[ed] at or near 
the mouth of the Big Sioux river, in Iowa. 

Your memorialists further represent that the country round the 
mouth of said river has but recently been purchased from the In- 
dians, and that since the purchase of the same, two hostile tribes, 
by a treaty among themselves, have partitioned out the country 
into separate hunting grounds for each tribe, in order to save their 
own hunting grounds; that the same is occupied every fall for 
hunting by bands of the different tribes, and that said tribes have 
since engaged in a war with each other, whereby said tract of coun- 
try has become the theatre of several sanguinary and bloody battles, 
to the great discomfort and annoyance of the few settlers who have 
pioneered the way for settlement and civilization of that fertile and 
interesting part of our young and growing State, who are entitled 
to the protection of government. 

Your memorialists further represent that the mouth of Big 
Sioux river is contiguous to a large scope of country owned and 
occupied by the Sioux, Omahas, Otoes, and other tribes of Indians, 
as Indian lands; that from said Indian country marauding bands 
of Indians will come into the settlements in Iowa to hunt, steal, 
and commit many other depredations which their lawless and un- 
restrained passions and habits may lead them to, which will keep 
the frontier settlements in constant alarm and dread, besides the 
great loss of property in these excursions, and the im[m]inent 
danger of human life arising from the intoxication, the malice, 
caprice or revenge of these unrestrained savages. 

Your memorialists further represent that said garrison would be 
on the route to Fort Larimie and the garrison [s] established by 

26 Bills to provide a military staif for the Governor, and to organize the 
militia to repel invasions were introduced during this session, but they failed 
to pass. 


the different trading posts on the Missouri and Yellow Stone rivers. 
That being situated on the Missouri river, it would be accessible by 
steamboats and would be a suitable and proper depot for supplies, 
ammunitions, &c., for the garrisons and forts on our western 

Therefore Resolved, That our Senators in Congress be instructed, 
and our Representatives requested, to use their utmost exertions to 
secure the establishment of a garrison at or near the mouth of the 
Big Sioux river, in Iowa, at as early a day as practicable.^^ 

Neither the Governor's letters nor this memorial of the 
General Assembly met with any response from Congress or 
from the War Department. Consequently, throughout the 
year 1855 the Indians continued to rob and annoy the set- 
tlers in northern Iowa with impunity. Fortunately that 
summer witnessed the beginning of the great tide of immi- 
gration into the upper Des Moines valley. Even Major 
Williams, who was not inclined to be unduly alarmed, ex- 
pressed Ms opinion that had it not been for this augmen- 
tation of the strength of the white settlements in 1855 the 
Indians would have attacked Fort Dodge.^^ 

At any rate as winter approached the situation again be- 
came so threatening that Governor Grimes made another 
attempt to secure action on the part of the Federal author- 
ities. On December 3rd he wrote a long letter to President 
Pierce. During the past two years'', he said, **the north- 
ern and western counties of the State have been greatly dis- 
turbed by the intrusion of wandering bands of Winneba- 
goes, Sioux, Pottawattamies, Omahas and Sacs and Foxes. 
During the summer the greater part of these Indians leave 
the State, though a band of the Pottawattamies remained 
in Ringgold county until the latter part of last August, 

27 Laws of Iowa, 1854-1855, pp. 294, 295. 

28 Ingham's Inlc-pa-du-tah's Revenge in The Midland Monthly, Vol. IV, 
p. 272. 


when, having stolen a large quantity of stock and provisions 
and murdered a white citizen, I directed them to be removed 
beyond the Missouri river by the sheriff of that county/' 

The Governor then called attention to the troubles during 
the previous year and to his ineffectual efforts to secure 
means of defense. am reliably informed'', he continued, 
**that the same Indians, but in increased numbers, have 
again pitched their tents within the State and are making 
preparations to remain during the winter. The Secretary 
of this State, Gen. Geo. W. McCleary, writes me that he has 
information that a large band of Sioux Indians have de- 
stroyed the settlements in Buena Vista county and forced 
the inhabitants to abandon their homes. He also writes me 
that these Indians are manifestly making preparations for 
war, and have been and are now making great efforts to 
induce all of the Mississippi River Sioux to unite with them 
in hostilities upon the whites. I hear from various sources 
that several runners have been sent by the Sioux west of 
the Missouri river, to those in this State, and in Minnesota, 
with war belts, urging the latter to make common cause 
with them. ' ' 

As a result there was great alarm along the frontier. 
Settlers were abandoning their homes and retiring to the 
more densely populated portions of the State. Petitions 
for assistance were being received by the Governor almost 
daily, indicating that there was general apprehension of a 
bloody Indian war. Governor Grimes did not believe that 
the Indians premeditated open hostilities during the winter, 
although he did not discount the danger of attack in the 

^*But whether they intend hostilities or not," was the 
Governor's further comment, difficulties and perhaps war 
will be likely to result from their intrusion upon the set- 


tiers. The frontier men have no great love for Indians — 
they are suffering loss by their pilfering — they dare not 
leave their families alone, and, hence, many of them are 
compelled to remove their families to points in the State 
where they can be protected. There are bad men enough 
to sell the Indians whiskey, which converts them into devils 
and prepares them for any atrocity. They retard the set- 
tlement and improvement of that portion of the State. All 
these consequences of their presence excite the settlers' 
minds and render an attack upon the Indians but little less 
imminent than an attack hy them, events in my view to be 
equally deplored. I beg leave to call your attention to the 
importance of having the Indians removed from this State 
at the earliest possible day. . . . The people of the 
State conceive that they have a right to ask it. They have 
bought their homes of the government with the understand- 
ing that they were to be protected in the possession." 

^'A year ago'', said the Governor in conclusion, *^the 
General Assembly of this State unanimously asked for the 
establishment of a military post on the Sioux river near the 
northwest corner of the State. I concur entirely in the pro- 
priety of that measure. I have no doubt that two companies 
of dragoons or cavalry stationed there, would effectually 
prevent the incursions of the Indians, and give quiet to the 
whole northwestern Iowa. Without such a Post they may 
be removed, but it does not occur to me how they may be 
permanently kept out. 

29 This letter is printed in full in the Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. 
Ill, pp. 135-137. The original is in the Executive Journal, 1855-18S8, pp. 
188-190, in the Public Archives, Des Moines. 

"I have written as strong a letter to the President as I know how to write, 
in relation to the Indians", wrote Grimes to George W. McCleary on Decem- 
ber 5, 1855. ' ' It will probably be acknowledged by the Comr. of Indian 
Affairs and that will be the end of it." — Executive Journal, 185S-1858, p. 


The last sentence may explain why Governor Grimes did 
not make more use of the slender means at his disposal to 
remove the Indians from the State. He felt that the prob- 
lem could only be solved by an adequate garrison in con- 
tinuous occupation of some well-located post. Such spo- 
radic measures as the State might be able to take would be 
only temporary in effect and they might arouse the Indians 
to greater hostility. As a matter of fact the Governor could 
hope for little assistance from the legislature in his desire 
to provide some effective military organization for the 
State. During this period the attitude of most of the mem- 
bers of the General Assembly towards military affairs 
seems to have been one of indifference, if not of contempt.^^ 
Consequently it is perhaps not a cause for wonder that the 
Federal authorities, far removed from the frontier, failed 
to respond to the Governor's appeals for protection. 

During 1856 there was a continuation of the rush of im- 
migration which began during the previous summer. While 
bands of Indians occasionally caused annoyance they were 
not so troublesome as during the preceding two years. The 
frontier settlements along the Des Moines River were 
strengthened by many newcomers, while on the Missouri 
slope settlers pushed further to the northward and up the 
valley of the Little Sioux River. Webster County, which 
reported a population of about nine hundred in 1854, had 
over three thousand in 1856. Kossuth County was not 
enumerated in the census of 1854, but in 1856 it had a popu- 
lation of nearly four hundred. The population of Wood- 
bury County, during the same period, increased from one 
hundred and seventy to nine hundred and fifty. The people 

30 Not only did the General Assembly fail to pass any effective military 
legislation, but both during the special session of 1856 and during the regular 
session of 1856-1857 the committee on military affairs in the House of Eepre- 
sentatives made exceedingly flippant reports. 


of these counties were therefore reasonably secure from 
anything but a general Indian attack. But to the north and 
west there were scattered settlers who were badly in need 
of more protection than they could themselves provide — 
as events soon proved. 


Among the most isolated of the settlers who took up 
claims in northwestern Iowa during the summer of 1856 
were several families who built their cabins on the shores 
of Lake Okoboji and Spirit Lake. The nearest settlement 
was at Springfield (now Jackson), Minnesota, about eight- 
een miles to the northeast. To the southward there was no 
settlement nearer than Gillett's Grove in Clay County, fully 
forty miles away. The nearest point at which supplies 
could be purchased in any considerable quantities was at 
Fort Dodge, far away to the southeast. 

In spite of their isolated situation these settlers appar- 
ently had little fear of the Indians, for aside from the rifles 
which were always a part of the pioneers' equipment they 
seem to have made no provision for defense in case of at- 
tack. The building of the cabins and the making of prairie 
hay occupied their time until late in the fall. 

Then began the long and terrible winter of 1856-1857 
and they were shut off almost completely from communica- 
tion with the rest of the world. Snow-storms began early 
in November, 1856, and at frequent intervals during the en- 
suing four months the prairies were swept by fierce bliz- 
zards. All through the winter the snow lay fully three feet 
deep on the level ground, while the ravines and other low 

31 The data for the following brief account of the tragedy, which in reality 
occurred chiefly on the shores of Lake Okoboji, was taken from Teakle's The 
Spirit Lake Massacre, a volume of over three hundred pages published by The 
State Historical Society of Iowa. 


place's were filled to a depth of fifteen or twenty feet. Week 
by week the weather became colder and colder until it was 
almost suicidal to venture out upon the open prairie. Even 
as late as the first week of March, 1857, there were no def- 
inite signs of the coming of spring. Thus it was that the 
settlers at the lakes received no warning of the approach of 
a band of hostilely disposed Indians from the southwest. 

Among the Sioux Indians there was a band of outlaws 
who were detested or feared even by their red brothers. 
At the head of this band was Inkpaduta or Scarlet 
Point". He had killed his own father, and his many other 
evil deeds had gained for him the reputation among both 
red men and whites of being the most villainous and blood- 
thirsty Indian in the northwest. His followers were war- 
riors of lesser fame, but of similar dispositions. 

It was this band which suddenly made its appearance in 
February, 1857, at the small village of Smithland in south- 
eastern Woodbury County. Here they stole com and other 
provisions belonging to the settlers, but departed within a 
few days. Journeying slowly up the valley of the Little 
Sioux they became each day more insolent and vicious. 
Such property as suited their fancy was openly stolen from 
the settlers ; horses, cattle, and hogs were wantonly killed ; 
cabin doors were torn from their hinges ; furniture was de- 
stroyed and bedding torn to shreds ; and settlers were ter- 
rorized and tortured in a spirit of pure deviltry. When the 
Indians arrived at the lakes on the evening of Saturday, 
March 7th, they were in a fiendish state of mind, and they 
celebrated their arrival at the ancient Mecca of the Sioux 
by holding a war dance. 

The story of the tragedy which followed has been so often 
told that it need not be repeated in this connection. In a 
word, the little settlement at the lakes was totally annihi- 


lated. As the Indians journeyed on slowly to the north- 
westward they took with them four white women as capr 
tives, and left only the mutilated bodies of thirty-two men, 
women, and children on the snow and in the pillaged cabins 
to tell the tale of their atrocities. 


It should not be imagined that the settlers along the Lit- 
tle Sioux calmly permitted the Indians to continue their 
depredations without efforts to spread the alarm or to halt 
the redskins in their course. At Smithland the inhabitants 
put up a show of military force which may have hastened 
the Indians' departure from that settlement. Later, when 
Inkpaduta and his followers barely stopped short of mas- 
sacre near the site of the present town of Peterson in south- 
western Clay County, a man by the name of Taylor made 
his escape and carried the news to Sac City. A company of 
men was quickly raised, and led by Captain Enoch Ross in 
pursuit of the Indians. But either because the redskins 
had too great a start, or because of a blizzard, or for some 
other reason the company finally turned back without ac- 
complishing its purpose. Indefinite news of Indian dep- 
redations also reached Fort Dodge, but the seriousness of 
the situation was not impressed on the people of that vil- 
lage until after it was too late for them to be of any real 
service. The severity of the weather and the great depth 
of the snow made the organization of an expedition in a 
sparsely settled country virtually impossible. 

Inkpaduta and his followers therefore perpetrated the 
massacre at Lake Okoboji without fear of immediate pur- 
suit or punishment. They had not left the scene of the 

•'52 Hart's History of Sac County, Iowa, p. 38; Gillespie and Steele's History 
of Clay County, Iowa, p. 57. 


massacre, however, before their crime was discovered by a 
trapper by the name of Morris Markham. He at once set 
out for the home of George Granger, the nearest settler on 
the Des Moines River. At length after great suffering he 
reached his destination, half dead from hunger, exposure to 
the cold, and physical weariness. Resting only a short time, 
he and George Granger pushed on to Springfield. 

The warning of danger thus given saved the Minnesota 
settlement from a fate similar to that of the settlers at the 
lakes to the southward. News of the massacre was dis- 
patched immediately to Fort Ridgely, nearly seventy miles 
away, and the settlers prepared to defend themselves in 
case of attack. Although Inkpaduta's band later appeared 
at Springfield and killed several of the settlers, the remain- 
ing inhabitants put up such a stout resistance that the In- 
dians were prevented from perpetrating a general mas- 

Meanwhile the tragedy at the lakes was discovered by 
three other men who lost no time in carrying the news to 
Fort Dodge, where they arrived on March 21st. There was 
great excitement in the frontier town. Plans for an expe- 
dition to the lake region were at once put under way; and 
messengers were sent to Webster City and other towns to 
the eastward urging cooperation in the enterprise. The 
response was enthusiastic. Within a short time a battalion 
of three small companies — containing in all about ninety 
officers and enlisted men — was organized. Poorly equipped 
even for an expedition under far more favorable circum- 
stances, realizing something of the perils and hardships 
they were facing, the men set out from Fort Dodge on 
March 24th for the purpose of burying the victims of the 

33 For an account of the attack on Springfield, Minnesota, see Teakle 's The 
Spirit Lake Massacre, Chs. XVII-XIX. 


massacre, rescuing the living if any were left, and visiting 
punishment, if possible, upon the perpetrators of the ter- 
rible deed. 

The story of this expedition is one of great hardship en- 
dured with a heroism typical of the pioneers. Not only did 
the deep snow make traveling very difficult, but the intense 
cold entailed severe suffering upon the men. Occasionally, 
at some settlement, they received welcome food and rest; 
and from time to time new recruits were added to the bat- 
talion, until it contained one hundred and twenty-five men. 
On the last day of March they had the good fortune to res- 
cue the terrified fugitives who were fleeing from Spring- 
field, Minnesota, unaware of the fact that the Indians, dis- 
couraged by the resistance encountered, had abandoned the 
attack. At night on the following day the expedition 
reached Granger's Point, in the Des Moines valley east of 
the lakes. 

Here it was learned that Inkpaduta and his band had 
long ago left the vicinity of the massacre, that they were 
now so far away that it would be impossible to overtake 
them, and that United States troops had been upon their 
trail. Pursuit of the Indians was therefore abandoned, but 
twenty-five members of the battalion were sent to the lakes 
to bury the victims of the massacre. On their return most 
of these men were caught in a terrific blizzard and two of 
them were frozen to death. The main command likewise 
passed through this two-day blizzard on the open prairie 
with no food nor fire. After intense suffering the men 
finally reached their homes, though it was a long while be- 
fore some of them recovered from the ill effects of ex- 

34 A full account of the Spirit Lake Relief Expedition is to be found in 
Teakle's The Spirit Ldlce Massacre, Chs. XXI-XXV. 


While the Iowa pioneers were toiling through the drifts 
in the direction of the lake, a body of United States troops 
from Fort Eidgely was in pursuit of the Indians. Upon 
the arrival of the messengers from Springfield an order was 
issued on the morning of March 19th to Captain Barnard 
E. Bee to proceed to Spirit Lake with Company D of the 
Tenth Infantry. *^At 12% p. m. my company/' reads Cap- 
tain Bee's report, numbering forty-eight, rank and file, 
was en route for its destination, taking, by advice of ex- 
perienced guides, a long and circuitous route, down the 
valley of the Minnesota, as far as South Bend, for the pur- 
pose of following, as long as possible, a beat3n path." 

Even on the road over which there had been some travel 
progress was very slow; and beyond the end of the road 
was a waste of snow-drifts which made speed impossible. 
After about ten days the expedition reached a grove where 
it was evident the Indians had camped not long before. 
Following the trail, the troops were on March 29th within 
striking distance of Inkpaduta's band without being aware 
of that fact. The guides, either ignorantly or purposely, 
declared that the camping-places which were discovered 
were two days old, and so the chase was abandoned as 
hopeless. ^^I was in a country destitute of provisions; be- 
hind me, and separating me from the few supplies I had, 
was the Des Moines river, rising rapidly", wrote Captain 
Bee in justification of his failure to give further pursuit to 
the Indians. These considerations, joined to the fact that 
my men were jaded and foot-sore from a march of one hun- 
dred and forty miles, the difficulties of which I have but 
feebly portrayed; that I had no saddles for my mules, and 
that only thirteen of them could be ridden, all these things 
induced me to return, mortified and disappointed, to my 
camp. ' ' 


A detail was sent to Spirit Lake, where the body of one 
of the murdered settlers was found and buried; while the 
main command proceeded to Springfield. After a few days 
Captain Bee returned to Fort Ridgely leaving three officers 
and twenty men at Springfield. While expressing my re- 
gret and disappointment that the object of my expedition 
was not attained, viz : the punishment of the Indians, ' ^ said 
Captain Bee in concluding his report, "I would be doing 
injustice to the officers and men of my company were I not 
to bring to the notice of the commanding officer the cheer- 
fulness and patience with which they encountered the fa- 
tigues of a no ordinary march; and perhaps I would be 
doing injustice to myself did I not assert that I used the 
best energies of my nature to carry out the instructions 
which I received. ^'^^ 

Several other efforts to chastise Inkpaduta and his fol- 
lowers were made during the summer of 1857, but without 
any result except for the killing of one, and possibly both, 
of the twin sons of Inkpaduta. Colonel E. B. Alexander, 
commanding at Fort Ridgely, was very earnest in his desire 
to punish the Indians, and had he remained at that post 
results might have been entirely different. But just as a 
formidable expedition was about to be sent into the Indian 
country to surround Inkpaduta and give him no chance for 
escape. Colonel Alexander was ordered to take a large part 
of the garrison and join the expedition to Utah. His suc- 
cessor gave little evidence of interest in the matter.'*^^ 

Charles E. Flandrau, agent for the Sioux of the Missis- 
sippi, was also very energetic. He realized that the mas- 
sacre was the work of a small band of Indian outlaws, and 

3-'> Captain Bee's report in House Executive Documents, 1st Session, 35th 
Congress, Vol. IT, Pt. I, pp. 350-355. 

3« A detailed account of the efforts to punish Inkpaduta may be found in 
Teakle's The Spirit Lake Massacre, Cli. XXIX. 


should not be charged to the whole Sioux nation. He initi- 
ated plans for the ransom of the captives, and cooperated 
with Colonel Alexander in measures for the punishment of 
Inkpaduta. But after the latter 's removal from Fort 
Eidgely he was virtually powerless to accomplish anything. 
An order from Washington ^^to investigate and report the 
facts in the case, and the measures which in my judgment 
were best calculated to redress the grievances and prevent 
their recurrence in the future ' gave him an opportunity to 
express his views. 

^^I had become so thoroughly convinced", said Agent 
Flandrau later in commenting on the situation, ' ' of the im- 
becility of a military administration, which clothed and 
equipped its troops exactly in the same manner for duty in 
the tropical climate of Florida, and the frigid region of 
Minnesota, that I took advantage of the invitation, to lay 
before the authorities some of my notions as to what was 
the proper thing to do". He insisted that a force of not 
less than four hundred mounted men should be kept in the 
field during the summer and stationed at well selected 
points on the frontier during the winter. ^'All troops in 
this country should be drilled to travel on snowshoes, be- 
cause during the entire winter, it is next to impossible to 
travel without them, where there are no roads, which will 
generally be the case where Indians will lead soldiers in a 
chase. The Indians all have snow-shoes and know how to 
use them, and will make twenty miles, where a man with 
shoes or boots on, will become exhausted and fail in five." 

He pointed out the difficulty of transporting army sup- 
plies in the winter time by means of mule teams and heavy 
sleds; and suggested the superiority of dog trains. ^'A 
party with an outfit of this kind, ' ' he said, ^ ' with provision 
to correspond, would be efficient in the winter, where the 


present United States soldier of any arm, with the usual 
outfit and transportation, would accomplish nothing. Let 
men be placed here, then, who will at all times and under all 
circumstances, be superior to the enemy they have to con- 
tend with, and I would have no fear of a recurrence of the 
difficulties of last spring. 


Captain Bee in his report declared that **a great check 
has been given to settlement and civilization by this mas- 
sacre. Settlers and pioneers would be most unwise to risk 
their lives and those of their families in a region which, 
from its facilities for hunting and fishing, and (should the 
settlement extend) for plunder and violence, may be termed 
the Indian paradise. ''^^ Naturally there was great excite- 
ment and consternation in northwestern Iowa. A writer 
who was well acquainted with the situation states that 

frontier settlements were abandoned and in some in- 
stances the excitement and alarm extended far into the 
interior. Indeed, in many cases where there was no possi- 
bility of danger the alarm was wildest. Military companies 
were formed, home guards were organized and other meas- 
ures taken for defense hundreds of miles from where any 
Indians had been seen for years .... The wildest 
accounts of the number and force of the savages was given 
currency and credence. Had all of the Indians of the North- 
west been united in one band they would not have formed 
a force so formidable as was supposed to exist at that time 
along the western border of Iowa and Minnesota. 

37 Flandrau 's The Inlc-pa-du-ta Massacre of 1857 in the Collections of the 
Minnesota Historical Society, Vol, III, pp. 401, 402. 

38 Bouse Executive Documents, 1st Session, 35th Congress, Vol. II, Pt. I, 
p. 354. 

3« Smith's A History of DicMnson County, Iowa, p. 147. 
An illustration of the manner in which the alarm spread to points far distant 
from the scene of distnrhanee is to be found in the following account: 

''Last Sabbath our good citizens were seriously startled by the announce- 


On the other hand, it does not appear that the massacre 
greatly delayed the settlement of that portion of the State. 
If the first settlers in that region left their homes they soon 
returned or their places were taken by others, even during 
the spring and summer of 1857. In fact, just as the Black 
Hawk War drew attention to Wisconsin and eastern Iowa 
and really attracted settlers, so the Spirit Lake Massacre 
brought the lake region into more general notice as a de- 
sirable locality for claim-seekers.^^ 

The massacre seems to have made very little impression 
on the Federal military authorities. Captain Bee recom- 
mended the establishment of a post on the Des Moines 
Eiver. sure retreat is offered to any band of savages 
which may be tempted to become hostile", he said. ^^The 
I Missouri offers a refuge; the vast country lying between 
I the Minnesota and Missouri, with its numerous lakes and 
j groves, affords countless places of concealment; and, al- 
j though Fort Eidgely lies within a few days ' march, yet, as 
I is shown by my expedition, an outrage may occur at a sea- 
son of the year which would render it impossible for troops 

j to reach the scene of distress under several days.''*^ But 


' ment, that the Indians were collecting in the vicinity of Fort Dodge, and were 
engaged in scenes of hostility. Several teams found their way to Des Moines 
in precipitate haste; and upon inquiry we ascertained that a general appre- 
hension North of us, exists with reference to the Indian invasion. Whole 
families are hurrying away from their homes, and a general feeling of con- 
I sternation seems to pervade the communities North of Des Moines." The as- 
sertion was also made that two military companies would be raised in Des 
Moines. — The Iowa WeeMy Citizen (Des Moines), April 29, 1857. 
j Another example of a military company raised during the Indian scare fol- 
I lowing the Spirit Lake Massacre is one which had a short existence at Lamotte 
! in the northern part of Jackson County. — Eoster and Eecord of Iowa Soldiers, 
Vol. VI, pp. 941, 942. 

40 See Smith 's A History of DicMnson County, Iowa, Ch. XII. 

41 House Executive Documents, 1st Session, 35th Congress, Vol. II, Pt. I, 
p. 354. 

Grovernor Grimes wrote an urgent letter to President Buchanan on April 8, 
1857, asking that measures be taken to protect the frontier. — Executive Jour- 
nal, 185S-1858, in the Public Archives, Des Moines, p. 245. 

VOL. XVI — 23 


this recommendation was not adopted, and aside from the 
fact that troops remained at Springfield all summer, the 
lesson of the massacre failed to bring any more adequate 
protection of the Iowa frontier by United States troops. 

A Democratic editor in northern Iowa denounced the ad- 
ministration for its 'imbecility and criminal indifference'' 
in not punishing Inkpaduta and his band. The bitter com- 
ment of a Republican editor was to the effect that if a run- 
away slave was wanted the government could act quickly 

The effect of the tragedy upon the attitude of the General 
Assembly of Iowa was different. In his biennial message 
of January 12, 1858, Governor Grimes recounted the facts 
concerning the massacre and the relief expedition, and sug- 
gested that Congress be memorialized to compensate the 
members of the expedition for their services. ^'I do not 
anticipate any further trouble from the Indians", he said 
in closing. ''The rumors put afloat in regard to future 
difficulty can generally be traced to interested persons who 
seek by their circulation to accomplish some ulterior pur- 
pose. To be prepared for any such emergency, however, I 
have established a depot for arms and ammunition at Fort 
Dodge, and have procured a cannon, muskets and ammuni- 
tion for another depot in Dickinson county. 

Even the Governor's optimistic view of the situation 
failed to allay the apprehensions of the General Assembly, 
at last fully aroused as to the need of defensive measures. 
On February 9, 1858, there was approved a somewhat 
lengthy statute "authorizing the Governor to raise, arm 
and equip, a Company of mounted men for the defence and 

42 JTamilton Freeman (Webster City), July 13, 1857. The complaint of the 
Democratic editor is here quoted from the Fort Dodge Sentinel. 

43 Shambauffh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
IT, pp. 57-59. 


protection of our frontier. The company was to consist 
of not less than thirty nor more than one hundred men. 
The officers were to be a captain, first and second lieuten- 
ants, a surgeon, four sergeants, and four corporals. All 
these officers except the surgeon were to be elected by the 
company, and the captain and lieutenants were to be com- 
missioned by the Governor. 

^^The Governor", it was declared, shall in no case call 
out said company of volunteers, unless in his judgment, 
founded upon reliable information, it is absolutely neces-- 
sary to protect the lives or property of the citizens of the 
State, and such force shall always be subject to the order of 
the Governor, and in no case shall the Governor keep such 
body of men in service after the General Government shall 
have taken measures effectually to protect the said frontier, 
and said company shall be discharged and disbanded at any 
time, by an order from the Governor. ' ' 

The law specified that the company should be ' ' raised and 
recruited as near the theatre of operations as practicable", 
and J. Palmer of Spirit Lake was designated as Agent" 
to raise the company and preside over the election of offi- 
cers. The men enlisting in the company were required to 
furnish their own horses, and *^all of their own clothing 
and rations of subsistence for both horse and man for such 
time as they may be in the service of the State of Iowa." 
Arms, ammunition, and equipment were to be furnished by 
the State. The compensation, to be paid out of the State 
treasury, was to vary from forty-five dollars a month for a 
private when on actual duty to seventy dollars a month for 
the captain. There were other details concerning the or- 
ganization and discipline of the company.^^ 

44 Laws of Iowa, 1858, pp. 10-14, ' ' Standing Army ' ' was the high-sound- 
ing heading given to this law. 

In response to a request, Governor OLowe reported on February 27th that he 



During the summer of 1857 there were occasional rumors 
of Indian invasion, but they seem to have had little or no 
foundation. Late in July a settler from Spirit Lake wrote 
that there are various rumors afloat in regard to contem- 
plated hostilities, but nothing of a positive nature is yet 
known. A few faint hearts have left, but there is a bold set 
of fellows here now, who would not leave if they knew that 
500 of the murderous dogs were about to descend upon 
them. They are building a fort which will be completed 
very soon, and then they can bid defiance to almost any 
number of these red devils. But I do not anticipate any 

was unable to make a definite statement concerning the location of the arms 
received by the State from the general government. He was informed, how- 
ever, that there was a considerable quantity of military stores at Fort Dodge. 
^'I have no information as to the precise character of these stores," he said, 
*^but have been assured that they have been kept in good condition since 
their deposit at that point. ' ' — Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of 
the Governors of Iowa, Vol. II, pp. 201, 202. 

45 Hamilton Freeman (Webster City) , August 6, 1857. 

The following is a description of the ' ' fort ' ' built at Spirit Lake during the 
summer of 1857 and of other defensive measures taken by the settlers: 

''It was a log building about 24x30 feet with a shake roof and puncheon 
floor and doors. Not a foot of lumber was used in its construction. Around 
the outside of the building, at a distance of from six to ten feet, a stockade 
was erected, which was formed of logs cut ten feet long and about eight inches 
in thickness. These were set on end in a trench from two and a half to three 
feet deep. A well was dug inside of the stockade. This building was erected 
in June and July, 1857, and stood there about two years. . . . 

''As would be natural under the circumstances, the settlers scattered around 
the lakes in different localities and had two or three places as their general 
rendezvous, or headquarters. The largest number gathered at Spirit Lake, and 
several small cabins were built in the immediate vicinity of the old fort. It 
was the intention, in case of an outbreak or attack by the Indians, for all 
parties to gather at the fort and make such defense as they were able. A 
second party, including W. B, Brown, C. F. Hill, William Lamont and one or 
two others, had their headquarters in Center Grove. A third, consisting of 
Prescott and his hired men, was at Okoboji, at the old 'Gardner Place.' " — 
Smith's A History of BicMnson County, Iowa, pp. 160, 161. 


At about the same time Editor Charles Aldrich of Web- 
ster City wrote of rumors ^'to the effect that *the bloody 
In-ji-ins* were contemplating a descent upon the settle- 
ments in this vicinity. No very sensible alarm has risen to 
the surface ; and yet many a trembling wight has worn his 
scalp to bed with excruciating fears lest the morning might 
find it drying on a hoop, or dangling from the saddle-bow 
of some remorseless Sioux. But these fears are all ground- 

As winter approached, however, it is apparent that there 
was again real cause for fear in the region which had been 
so terribly visited in March. Letters from the frontier 
told of Indian depredations in Clay County. A cabin was 
burned, property was stolen, and settlers were annoyed in 
other ways. A small party of settlers pursued the Indians, 
but being poorly armed and greatly outnumbered they were 
forced to retire without giving the Indians the punishment 
they deserved. ^'The difficulties that have transpired in 
Clay, Dickinson and other counties in the North,'' wrote 
Editor John Teesdale, ^ indicate a purpose upon the part of 
the Indians to give the infant settlements on the frontier 
still farther trouble .... A letter, dated January 
11th, at Spirit Lake, and written by Orlando C. Howe to 
Hon. C. C. Carpenter, informs us that the indications of a 
general invasion from the savages, are numerous. The set- 
tlers for forty miles around are anxiously marking the 
course pursued by the residents at Spirit Lake ; and in the 

^QEamilton Freeman (Webster City), August 6, 1857. 

A little later Samuel E. Curtis wrote to the editor of a Des Moines paper 
that he had heard that Port Kearney on the Platte River was to be abandoned. 
He considered it very ''unfortunate that the posts nearest the Sioux should 
be thus reduced in number and force. It appears, however, that if the 
troops were removed from Port Kearney it was only for a short time, for 
there was a garrison at that post in 1859. Fort Randall on the Missouri River 
also had a garrison throughout this period. 


event that the settlers near the lake move away to the more 
secure neighborhoods South of them, a general stampede 
will take place in the northwestern counties. Homes will be 
deserted, and a vast amount of valuable property will be 
left to the tender mercy of Indian pillage and hostility.'' 

It is a matter of justice to state," continued the editor, 
' ^ that the late Governor of Iowa, within the past two years, 
has repeatedly reminded the Administration of its duty to 
prevent, by decisive steps, the encroachments of the sav- 
ages. — But it seems that the President has preferred to 
garrison forts that are not needed, and quarter an army 
upon Kansas to subserve his pro-slavery purposes, rather 
than to protect the citizens of Iowa from the murderous on- 
slaughts of Indians. ''^^ 

This situation no doubt freshened the memory of the 
Spirit Lake Massacre in the minds of the legislators, and 
was an influence in securing the enactment of the law pro- 
viding for a frontier company which has already been 
mentioned. Petitions for protection were presented; and 
in addition to the law which was passed there were several 

47 T7ie Iowa WeeTcly Citizen (Des Moines), January 20, 1858. The editor 
received much of his information from Jareb Palmer who had just arrived in 
Des Moines from northwestern Iowa. 

Jareb Palmer also wrote a letter to Charles Aldrich which was published in 
the Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), January 14, 1858. 

On January 2, 1857, George Coonley, captain of the ''Little Sioux Guards", 
wrote as follows to Governor Grimes: 

' ' The continued depredations of the Indians upon the inhabitants of Little 
Sioux Valley have made it necessary to arm in self defense. We have organ- 
ized an independent military Company comprising the inhabitants of Clierokee, 
Buenna Vista & Clay Counties. We have the men but lack the guns. Last 
Winter the Indians passing through found the settlers unprepared & took 
nearly every gun in the above mentioned Counties, They are upon us again 
this winter burning Houses, carrying off & destroying property. With 11 men 
we attacked 18 Indians but several of our guns being useless were compelled 
to retreat .... During the month of December they have burned sev- 
eral houses & destroyed a large amount of the property of settlers. ' — Cor- 
re.spondence, Militia, 1859-1873, G II, 640, in Public Archives, Des Moines. 


unsuccessful bills dealing with the subject, including pro- 
posed memorials to Congress asking for the establishment 
of military posts at Fort Dodge, Sioux City, Council Bluffs, 
and other points in the northwest.^^ 

Even before the Governor's signature had been attached 
to the law he apparently authorized the raising of the com- 
pany which soon came to be known as the Frontier 
Guards". A Webster City paper dated February 11, 1858, 
reported that Jareb Palmer was busy recruiting men for 
the company in Hamilton and We*bster counties. A week 
later it was announced that a company had been organized 
and that the following officers had been elected: captain, 
Henry B. Martin of Webster City ; first lieutenant, William 
Church of Homer; and second lieutenant, D. S. Jewett of 
Boonsboro ; while among the sergeants and corporals were 
several men who had been members of the Spirit Lake Be- 
lief Expedition.^^ 

The company started from Webster City on Monday, 

48 For instance see Journal of the House of Representatives, 1858, pp. 72, 
73, 76, 88, 98, 99. The bill providing for the military company was adopted 
unanimously in the House. — p. 129. 

Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), February 11, 1858. The law was not 
approved until February 9th. 

Some time during this winter there had been organized at Boonsboro a com- 
pany knowns as the ' ' Boonsboro Frontier Guards ' with Samuel B. McCall as 
captain. Many of the members of this company doubtless enlisted later in the 
company recruited by Jareb Palmer. 

On January 30, 1858, Grenville M. Dodge wrote to Governor Lowe, tendering 
the services of the Council Bluffs Guards" for frontier service. He de- 
scribed this organization as an " organized and uniformed volunteer Com- 
pany which has been under drill some two years — composed mostly of Frontier 
men who have been in service in an Indian country nearly all their lives, and 
are acquainted with our whole frontier line. ' ' — Correspondence, Miscellaneous, 
G II, 731, in the Public Archives, Des Moines. 

Governor Lowe was forced to decline this offer, however, because of the 
terms of the law providing for the organization of the frontier company. — 
Executive Journal, 1858-1862, p. 22. 

Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), February 18, 1858. 


March 1st. Shortly before that date a ball was given at the 
Willson House in honor of the men, and they were pre- 
sented with a flag made by the ladies of the town. *^The 
Company, numbering 31 men, left Fort Dodge about noon, 
on Tuesday,'^ wrote Charles Aldrich, ^^as fully equipped 
and as comfortably provided for as the circumstances 
would permit. They go out well armed and well provi- 
sioned. The Company will be divided into three detach- 
ments, one of which will be stationed at Spirit Lake (head- 
quarters) under Capt. Martin, one at Gillett's Grove, on the 
Little Sioux, under Lieut. Church, and the other, at Gran- 
ger's Point, on the Des Moines, under Lieut. Jewett."^^ 

No detailed account of the march of the Frontier Guards 
to the lake region or of their activities during the next few 
months is available. Late in March two soldiers in the 
*Army of Occupation,' at Spirit Lake" returned to Web- 
ster City for provisions. *'They report the ^ boys' all in 
good health and fine spirits ' ', wrote Editor Aldrich. ^ ^ They 
have scouted over the whole country and have discovered 
indications and evidence which prove conclusively that 

51 Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), March 4, 1858. 

It appears that ten additional men were enrolled after the company reached 
the lakes. — Boster and Eecord of Iowa Soldiers, Vol. VI, p. 938. The roster 
of the company as here given indicates that the men were mustered into service 
in November and December, 1858. Doubtless this refers to the beginning of 
the company's second period of service — that is, during the winter of 1858- 
1859, as discussed below. The men were doubtless first mustered into service 
in February or March, 1857. 

A letter from Spirit Lake, dated February 25th, urged that the Frontier 
Guards proceed at once to the lakes, for the reason that Inkpaduta and his 
band were prowling about the settlements. — Hamilton Freeman (Webster 
City), March 4, 1858. See also The Iowa Weekly Citizen (Des Moines), March 
10, 1858. 

One writer says that Lieutenant Church and his squad were located at 
Peterson, and Lieutenant Jewett and his squad at "Emmett". — Boster and 
Eecord of Iowa Soldiers, Vol. VI, p. 939. 

There is much correspondence relative to the Frontier Guards in the Publi( 
Archives, Des Moines. 


Inkpaduta's band has been prowling about the neighbor- 
hood during the winter. As soon as the grass starts, they 

will make an effort to hunt out and punish the savage old 
ruffian. ''52 

If this effort was made it was not successful. The Fron- 
tier Guards remained on duty for four months, and then on 
July 1st they were disbanded by order of the Governor. 
The organization was not dissolved, however, and hence 
the men were subject to call at any time when conditions 
again demanded their presence on the frontier. ^ ^ They saw 
no hostile Indians, but they performed a very important 
work in restoring the confidence of the settlers, and thereby 
increasing emigration: and it is more than probable that 
the Indians left that section of the State in consequence of 
the preparation for their reception. "^^ At the Fourth of 
July celebration at Webster City the following toast was 
proposed: ^^The Frontier Guard — the Ladies of Webster 
City would tender them their thanks for their gallantry in 
leaving their homes to defend ours, and for returning with 
a name and fame untarnished. 

The Indians gave no trouble during the summer and early 
fall of 1858. But in November there again came rumors of 
threatened hostilities. It was stated on good authority 
that a large number of Indians were encamped near Spirit 
Lake and had subjected the settlers to petty annoyances. 
Messengers had been dispatched to Des Moines with peti- 
tions asking Governor Lowe to call out the Frontier Guards. 
Provisions were very scarce that winter, and it was pre- 
dicted that on this account the Indians would be especially 
inclined to plunder. Prompt action now'', it was de- 

52 Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), March 25, 1858. 
5s Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), July 8, 1858. 
^•i: Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), July 8, 1858. 


clared, ^^will keep our frontiersmen quiet and secure, and 
doubtless preserve many valuable lives. 

Apparently Governor Lowe lost no time in calling out 
the Frontier Guards. On November 22nd Captain Martin 
and his company left Webster City for the lake region. He 
was under instructions to refrain from any offensive action 
against the Sioux in general. But he was to order the In- 
dians to leave the State and drive them out if necessary; 
and especially was he to make every effort to capture Ink- 
paduta. It was said that members of Inkpaduta's band 
were prowling about Spirit Lake and had been recognized 
by Mrs. Abbie Gardner Sharp. Fearing an attack, the set- 
tlers were standing on guard day and night until the arrival 
of the Frontier Guards.^^ 

A decided difference of opinion now arose as to the neces- 
sity of maintaining a military company in northwestern 
Iowa. ^'Dr. E. S. Prescott, who has resided at Spirit Lake 
since April, 1857, and whose wife and children are there," 
said a Des Moines editor early in December, "informs the 
Jasper Free Press, that there is no authority for the ru- 
mors of an Indian invasion at Spirit Lake ; that the Indians 
who perpetrated the outrages a year since, are 800 miles off ; 
and that the few Indians who have been seen at Spirit Lake, 
are a few who had an agent's pass for passing between 
Fort Eidgely and Cotton River. Dr. P. strongly insinuates 
that sinister motives prompted the message sent to Gov. 
Lowe''. On the other hand, Orlando C. Howe, who had 
recently been in Des Moines, declared that military protec- 
tion was urgently needed, and his statement was amply 

TIamilton Freeman (Webster City), November 12, 1858. 

^(i Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), November 26, 1858. 

An account of the march of the Frontier Guards to Spirit Lake, written by 
T). S. Jewett, may be found in the Boone County News (Boonsboro), Decem- 
ber 17, 1858. 


corroborated by numerous petitions and official requests 
from Clay and Dickinson counties. ^^It is impossible to 
reconcile the statements of Dr. Prescott, with those made to 
the Governor'', said the editor. There is falsehood some- 

Politics soon entered into the discussion and helped to 
prolong the controversy which continued throughout the 
winter. Democratic editors seemed only too glad to seize 
upon any pretext to accuse Governor Lowe and the Repub- 
lican party with waste and extravagance in the expenditure 
of State funds. ^^At the time the ^Frontier Guards,' early 
last winter, were called into the field by the Governor, we 
asked a few questions relative to the necessity existing for 
such a call", declared a Democratic editor at Des Moines 
late in March, 1859. ^^A thorough investigation convinced 
us that the Governor had been deceived, and we wrote it. 
. . . The Governor knows it — his Deputies know it — 
the citizens of Spirit Lake — in fact all know that this Spir- 
it LaJce affair is one of the most brazen humbugs ever per- 
petrated in the State of Iowa. All the abuse, the apologies, 
and the lying statements of bitter partizans and interested 
parties, will not cover up this fraud and blunder. "^^ 

In the same paper there was published a letter from G. H. 
Bush of Spirit Lake telling in a rather sarcastic manner of 
how two Indians, with their women and children, were cap- 
tured after they had openly come into town. ^^The soldiers 
under Capt. Martin have proved their generosity on two or 
three occasions as they would their bravery, doubtless, 
should opportunity offer," said the writer, ^^but the fact is 
we do not need them. There is no danger of Indian depre- 
dations being committed here, and a great many of the set- 

57 The Iowa WeeMy Citizen (Des Moines), December 8, 1858. 
Iowa State Journal (Des Moines), March 26, 1859. 


tiers feel that the State is uselessly burdened by the sta- 
tioning of troops at this point. '^^^ 

Editor John F. Duncombe of Fort Dodge did not doubt 
that the Governor was actuated by good motives in calling 
out the frontier company. ^'Buf, he asked, *4s it not a 
little cruel that men who spent hundreds of dollars in the 
expedition of 1857, who took their last bread and meat to 
feed the hungry soldiers, that killed their last ox for the 
same purpose, and who were frozen, and to this day have 
not recovered from the injuries received on that expedition, 
should be utterly neglected, when money is now paid out so 
lavishly? Capt. Martin has men in his own company who 
know these facts.'' It was further asserted that much of 
the news concerning Indian troubles was manufactured at 
Des Moines and in the southern part of the State.'^^ 

Republican editors did not allow these assertions to go 
unchallenged. Among those who were most outspoken in 
defense of the Governor's action was Charles Aldrich of 
Webster City, who had every opportunity to know the real 
facts in the case. Early in December he gave expression to 
his views in the following unmistakable language : 

The ordering of the Frontier Guard to our Northwestern fron- 
tier has awakened the slumbering liars of the Democratic press to 
something of the activity which they displayed before the late 

59 Iowa State Journal (Des Moines), March 26, 1859. 

60 Quoted from the Fort Dodge Sentinel in the Iowa State Journal (Des • 
Moines), April 30, 1859. 

The State Auditor's report indicates that up to November 6, 1859, there 
was paid out of the State treasury the sum of $19,800.79 for ''Military ex- 
penses — Frontier Army". — Eeport of the Auditor of State, 1859, p. 8, in Iowa 
Legislative Documents, 1859-1860. 

On December 14, 1858, William Williams of Fort Dodge wrote to Governor 
Lowe urging the need of frontier protection. He declared that if the War 
Department would place him in charge and give him one hundred men, he 
would ' ' undertake to defend the whole frontier — for the time to come ' — 
Correspondence, Miscellaneous, G II, 731, in Public Archives, Des Moines. 


election .... The source of this nonsensical clamor is the 
State Journal, at Des Moines .... That paper is a regular 
Thug, to which fairness, candor, honesty and truth, are the most 
entire strangers .... The Journal ridicules the idea of In- 
dian troubles, without knowing the true condition or caring a drink 
of whiskey for the interests of our exposed settlements on the 
frontier .... 

That Gov. Lowe is fully justified in the a tion he has taken, no 
man at all conversant with the condition of our Northwestern fron- 
tier can for a moment doubt. The dread inspired by the barbarous 
massacre of 1857, and the slight notice taken of it by the General 
Government, have driven hundreds of settlers from the State, and 
hundreds more would follow them but for the assurance of some 
sort of protection. It is a settled conviction on the part of a ma- 
jority of [the] community, that a general Indian war is impending 
in the Northwest. It is but a few months since it required all the 
address of the officers connected with Indian Affairs, to prevent a 
general and a bloody outbreak in Western Minnesota. One of the 
first results of such a calamity, would be a savage incursion into 
our own State. When such a catastrophe may occur is beyond any 
human power to foretell. We are denied the protection due us 
from the General Government, and a spark may kindle a flame that 
will only be quenched by the blood of hundreds of our settlers. 
The State of Iowa had far better maintain a force upon her fron- 
tiers, adequate for their protection, for the next fifty years, than 
suffer a repetition of the barbarities of 1857. Such is the feeling 
on the frontier, and whether predicated upon probabilities or pos- 
sibilities, the State owes it to herself to protect these pioneer settle- 
ments, and give them the assurance of safety. 

Statements like these were backed up by letters from men 
of good standing who were living in the region threatened 
by the Indians. Charles Smeltzer, county judge of Clay 
County, wrote to Governor Lowe that he had visited Spirit 
Lake and found the settlers in a state of great excitement. 
He had seen Indians and had discovered evidences of many 
more. ^^Now I have given you the facts,'' wrote Judge 

Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), December 10, 1858. 


Smeltzer, *^and beg of you to take some measures to protect 
us both in life and property. Laws will not do it, and we, 
as citizens of the great State of Iowa, claim protection, and 
if it is not rendered, we shall be under the necessity of kill- 
ing every Indian we see, whether friendly or hostile; and 
by the ^eternaP we will do it, and take the consequences. 
For not being able to converse with them, we know not their 

motives, and everything argues that they are after plun- 

At an indignation meeting held at Spirit Lake on Decem- 
ber 20, 1858, a series of resolutions was adopted, declaring 
that '^the citizens of Dickinson, Clay and Buena Vista coun- 
ties acted prudently and wisely in petitioning the Governor 
as they did to exercise the power vested in him for the pro- 
tection of our frontiers." They also condemned 'Hhe man- 
ner and matter, spirit and tenor of the articles which lately 
appeared in the public prints, over the signatures of J. S. 
Prescott and Wm. B. Zerby, and we pronounce the same as 
gross libels on the citizens of Northwestern Iowa, and that 
the same were dictated by a spirit of personal revenge and 
mercenary motives on the part of J. S. Prescott and paid 
poltroonery on the part of Wm. B. Zerby." A committee 
was appointed to wait upon J. S. Prescott when he returned 
to the settlement and demand of him his reasons for pub- 
lishing the ^ ' scandalous falsehoods ' ' attributed to him. At 
about the same time, in a lengthy statement signed by more 
than forty settlers at the lakes, J. S. Prescott was branded 
as a reverend land shark" and as ^^a speculating divine, 
who prostitutes his professed calling to base and mercenary 
ends, thereby deceiving the honest and unsuspecting."^^ 

62 The Iowa Weeldy Citizen (Des Moines), December 22, 1858. 

63 The Iowa Weeldy Citizen (Des Moines), January 5, 1859, 

Certain individuals", wrote Charles Aldrich, ''who did not dare to stay 
at Spirit Lake this winter, through fear of the Indians — showing infinitely 


The evidence indicates that the Frontier Guards served a 
useful purpose during the winter of 1858-1859. They came 
in contact several times with Indians who had no right in 
Iowa, and drove them across the State line. Several In- 
dians were also held in captivity for a time. The settlers 
as a whole apparently appreciated the presence of the com- 
pany. Certainly if this meager military protection gave 
the settlers a feeling of security and kept the Indians from 
depredations, to say nothing of more serious hostility, it 
was well worth all it cost to the State — less than twenty 
thousand dollars for protection afforded during two win- 
ters:^ ^ 

With the return of the Frontier Guards to their homes 
early in the spring of 1859, the question of frontier defense 
in Iowa ceased to demand much attention until after the 
outbreak of the Civil War. Governor Lowe, in his biennial 
message of January 9, 1860, related to the General Assem- 
bly the main facts concerning the activities of the company. 
A week later, in response to a request. Governor Kirkwood 
informed the House that the company had not been called 
into service for the third time. Nor had he received any 
information indicating a necessity for its services during 
that winter.'^® 

less courage than many of the pioneer mothers and daughters who have re- 
mained at Spirit Lake — have gone up and down the State, deprecating the 
folly of keeping an armed force on the frontier. Had all the settlers followed 
their example, there certainly would have been reason and pertinence in their 
suggestions." — Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), February 25, 1859. 

64 For information concerning the activities of the Frontier Guards see the 
Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), January 7, March 11, April 16, May 21, 
1859; Boone County News (Boonsboro), January 7, 1859; The Iowa Citizen 
(Des Moines), Ma,rch 16, 1859; Boster and Eecord of Iowa Soldiers, Vol. VI, p. 
939; Shambaugh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
11, pp. 171-173. 

65 Shambaugh's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, pp. 171-173, 371. 


Late in February, however, Governor Kirkwood sent a 
special message to the legislature saying that he had just 
received communications from settlers living in Clay, 
Cherokee, and Woodbury counties, telling of Indian depre- 
dations. He pointed out the difficulty and expense of mov- 
ing a military force from Fort Dodge to the threatened 
region at that time of the year. Consequently he recom- 
mended ^^that the services of persons in the valley of the 
Little Sioux Eiver be invited and accepted, and that arms 
and ammunition, particularly the latter, be furnished 
them. ' ' As the law then stood Governor Kirkwood was of 
the opinion that he had no authority to employ any other 
force than the Frontier Guards, the members of which lived 
far distant from the scene of disturbance. A week later the 
Governor informed the Senate that he had received addi- 
tional reports concerning Indian troubles in Cherokee 

In response to the Governor's suggestion the General 
Assembly passed a law which was published under the 
heading of ^^Army of Protection''. The Governor was 
authorized to furnish settlers with arms and ammunition 
with which to defend themselves against *^the threatened 
depredations of marauding bands of hostile Indians". The 
Governor might also cause to be enrolled a company of 
minute men, in number not exceeding twelve, at the Gov- 
ernor's discretion, who shall at all times hold themselves 
in readiness to meet any threatened invasion of hostile In- 
dians as aforesaid — the said minute men only to be paid 
for the time actually employed in the service herein con- 
templated." Four of these minute men" might be em- 
ployed '^as an active police for such time, and to perform 

66 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
IT, pp. 376, 377, 380. 


such services as may be demanded of them". The sum of 
five hundred dollars was made available for use in the man- 
ner contemplated in this act.^^ 

Either the fears of the settlers were largely without 
foundation at this time, or the Indians soon withdrew. 
Newspapers, even along the frontier, paid very little atten- 
tion to the scare. Furthermore, the services of the '^minute 
men", if such a company was organized, must have been of 
very short duration, for the State Auditor's report for the 
biennium ending on November 3, 1861, reveals the sum of 
only $34.75 paid to the Army of protection for North West 


It was not until the following winter that the likelihood 
of Indian invasion again caused anxiety in Iowa. But as 
the inevitability of civil strife became each day more cer- 
tain, there came warnings of uneasiness among the Sioux. 
*'I learn that the present unfortunate condition of public 
affairs has rendered necessary the transfer of the U. S. 
troops from Fort Kearny and other points in the West to 
the sea-board", wrote Governor Kirkwood to the Secretary 
of War on January 25, 1861. ^ ' It is now rumored here that 
large bands of Indians are gathering near Fort Kearny 
with hostile intentions. The northwestern border of this 
State has for several years last past been subject to Indian 
depredations, the evidence of which is on file in your De- 

67 Laws of Iowa, 1860, pp. 142, 143. 

^8 Beport of the Auditor of State, 1861, p. 10, in Iowa Legislative Docu- 
ments, 1861-1862. 

In a long letter on March 5, 1860, Governor Kirkwood authorized George W. 
Lebourveau to organize the ''minute men" provided for in the act of the 
legislature, and instructed him relative to the enlistment, equipment, and duties 
of the men so organized. — Executive Journal, 1858-1862, pp. 281-283, in 
Public Archives, Des Moines. 

VOL. XVI — 24 


partment. ' ' In view of the fact that the State was almost 
without means of defense, the Governor asked that an extra 
supply of arms be stored either at Des Moines or Fort 
Dodge, in charge of a United States officer.^'^ This request, 
however, went ungratified. 

The outbreak of the Civil War naturally created quite a 
stir among the Sioux tribesmen. While as a whole they 
had maintained reasonably friendly relations with the 
whites, it is evident that for years they had been nursing 
their wrath in silence. It must be admitted that they had 
ample cause for resentment. They had been forced to ac- 
cede to treaties made against their will and under circum- 
stances which strongly aroused their suspicions; and too 
often even these unsatisfactory agreements were not faith- 
fully observed by the government. They had also been 
exploited and plundered by traders, whiskey-sellers, and 
other disreputable frontiersmen. Furthermore, the failure 
of the military authorities to capture and punish Inkpaduta 
confirmed their growing belief that their Great Father was 
not so powerful as he claimed to be."^^ It is not strange, 
therefore, that the Sioux saw hope of securing revenge 
when the meager frontier garrisons were weakened or with- 
drawn, and when they observed the whites preparing for a 
struggle between themselves. 

Immediately after the outbreak of war Governor Kirk- 
wood renewed his request for arms with which to defend 
the Indian frontier. ^^If you could place 500 long-range 

o» The War of the Eehellion: Official Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 57. 

70 When the Great Father had no cavalry to chase Inkpaduta, but was 
ohVifred to hire Indians to make that fruitless pursuit, the Sioux inferred that 
while he had a great multitude of people he could not make soldiers of them. 
A veteran missionary recorded the opinion that the failure of the government 
to pursue and capture Inkpaduta was the 'primary cause' of the uprising 
which came five years later." — Polwell's Minnesota: The North Star State, 
p. 193. 


rifles at Council Bluffs and the same number at Sioux City, 
in store/' he said, ^^to be used by me in case of necessity, I 
will furnish the men'^ This request was supplemented on 
the following day by another letter enclosing a communica- 
tion on the same subject, written by Justice Caleb Baldwin, 
whose home was at Council Bluff sJ^ 

Ten days later the Governor had not received any re- 
sponse, and so he made another appeal to Secretary Cam- 
eron, am daily receiving letters from our northwestern 
frontier expressing alarm on account of the Indians'', he 
wrote. ^ ^ Our people there are very uneasy, and have in my 
judgment good cause for fear. I don't ask for anything 
but arms, accouterments, and ammunition. We have plenty 
of men willing to use them in their own defense and that of 
the Government. If no arrangement has yet been made for 
arms for this State, do, for God's sake, send us some.""^^ 

Shortly afterward there came a reply to the Governor's 
earlier letter, saying that it was not the intention of the 
War Department to order the State troops from the West 
for some time, and they would be on hand to meet any 
emergency. ^'A glance at the map of Iowa", was Kirk- 
wood's reply, '^will show you that the troops raised in this 
State will at Keokuk be at least 300 miles from the nearest 
point (Council Bluffs), and 400 miles from the point (Sioux 
City) most exposed to Indian depredations. This will not 
afford any protection to the northwestern frontier. All I 
ask is arms and ammunition; not any men.""^^ 

Again Secretary Cameron wrote that the most he could 
say was that ^^the Chief of Ordnance advises that 1,000 
stand of arms ought to be forwarded to Keokuk, to be there 

71 The War of the Eehellion: Offlcial Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 86, 89. 

72 The War of the Eehellion: Official Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 128. 

73 The War of the Eehellion: Official Eecords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 127, 158. 


taken in charge by Colonel Curtis or some other responsible 
person, to be used in case of an emergency. ' ' With patience 
nearly exhausted the Governor replied that * 4f by this it is 
intended that the arms shall remain in Keokuk until an 
attack is actually made by Indians, and then be used to 
repel such attack, such arrangement will not be of practical 
benefit .... Between Keokuk and either of these 
points [Council Bluffs and Sioux City] there are only about 
80 miles of railroad, and the balance of the way arms, &c., 
must be carried by wagon. The Indians might invade our 
State, do incalculable injury, and be gone beyond our reach 
long before an express could reach Keokuk and the arms 
taken to the point of attack. The arms to be available to us 
must be near the points exposed. Please consult Colonel 
Curtis on these matters. He is familiar with the geography 
of our State, and can give you important and reliable in- 

Governor Kirkwood now turned his attention to the Gen- 
eral Assembly which he had called to meet in special session 
on May 15th. In his message of the following day among 
other things he discussed the situation with respect to the 

74T/ie War of the Eehellion: Official Records, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, pp. 162, 185, 

On May 6th Governor Kirkwood wrote to General John E. Wool that he 
had information to the effect that Sioux Indians were already in the State in 
small bands stealing horses. — The War of the Eehellion: Official Records, Ser. 
Ill, Vol. I, p. 163. 

* ' The western counties are waking up to the importance of organizing home 
guards. The Indians may become troublesome on the frontier; — and it is a 
good thing to be in readiness to receive them. We hardly think it prudent for 
lowans on the Southern or Western frontiers to enlist in the U. S^, army. 
They may be needed at home, to protect their own hearthstones from ruthless 
invasion." — The Iowa State Register (Des Moines), May 8, 1861. 

Governor Kirkwood refused to accept Grenville M. Dodge's ''Council Bluffs 
Guards" for Federal service at the outbreak of the war, for the reason that 
the company was badly needed on the frontier. — Annals of Iowa (Third Se- 
ries), Vol. IV, p. 579, Vol. V, p. 243. 



I Sioux Indians. **The known facts he said, ^*that the 
troops have been wholly or in part withdrawn from the 
I Forts in the Territories west of us, and the restraint of 
j their presence thus removed from the Indian tribes on our 
border, that the Indians have received, probably, highly 
colored statements in regard to the War now upon us ; and 
that since the massacre at Spirit Lake in our State some 
years since, which went wholly unpunished, they have shown 
an aggressive disposition, coupled with the probability that 
they may be tampered with by bad men, render it in my 
judgment, a matter of imperative necessity that proper 
measures be taken to guard against danger from that 
quarter. '^"^'^ 


The legislature took due cognizance of the situation and 
passed several laws reorganizing or relating to the militia. 
In one of these laws it was declared that *^for the better 
protection of the exposed borders of this State, to resist 
marauding parties of Indians and other hostile persons, to 
repel invasion, and to render prompt and efficient assistance 
to the United States," the Governor was authorized ^'to 
organize two Regiments of Infantry, one Battalion of not 
less than three Companies of Artillery, and one Squadron 
of not less than five Companies of Cavalry, and one Eegi- 
ment of Mounted Riflemen for the service of the State". 
The companies of mounted riflemen, which were to be raised 
in the counties most exposed to danger, were to consist of 
not less than forty nor more than one hundred men. It was 
the understanding that these men would not be ordered into 
service outside the border counties.'^^ 

75 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 260. 

"^^Laws of Iowa, 1861 (Extra Session), pp. 27-30. 


Meanwhile, defensive measures were already under way. 
Because of the distance and the lack of facilities for com- 
munication Governor Kirkwood appointed Caleb Baldwin 
of Council Bluffs and A. W. Huhbard of Sioux City as aids 
to take charge of the plans for the protection of the frontier 
against the Sioux Indians. Late in April the Governor 
wrote to Caleb Baldwin authorizing him to direct the organ- 
ization of military companies in the counties in the vicinity 
of Council Bluffs. There are not now any arms to send 
there, ' ' he said, ' ^ except about 50 muskets, that will be sent 
at once. The people should organize as minute men, and 
arm themselves with private arms as well as they can . . 
. . If they are called on to act against Indians, they had 
better act as mounted men.''^^ 

Shortly after the receipt of this letter Judge Baldwin | 
issued an appeal to the people of western Iowa to organize j 
at least one military company in each county; and he was 
heartily seconded by the editor of a Council Bluffs paper."^^ 

At Sioux City, which was the largest town in the region 
most exposed to Indian raids, there was much interest in 
plans for defense. About the middle of May it was reported 

77 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of loiva, Vol. 
II, p. 410. See also the Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 11, 1861. 

78 Council Bluffs Nonpareil, May 11, 1861. 

On May 21st Governor Kirkwood informed the House of Representatives that 
several companies had been organized under these instructions. ' ' I have for- 
warded to Council Bluffs", he said, ^'140 stand of arms, and have ordered one 
8 lb. field piece, and 40 revolvers with the necessary equipments and ammuni- 
tion transported thither without delay, incurring for express charges, freight, ' 
&c., &c., an expense now known as $359.95. The force necessary to protect the 
North and Western frontier should be had by organizing in each county one 
company of mounted rangers who should meet for drill and company exercise 
as often as their patriotism and interest might induce them to do, and the 
expense attending such force consists in furnishing each member of a company 
with a rifle and sword bayonet, valued at from 23 to 50 dollars, and a Colt's 
revolver valued at 22 to 25 dollars. ' ' — Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclama- 
tions of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. II, pp. 410, 411. j 


that ^^Gen, Tripps * Frontier Guards' was rapidly filling 
Tip : it then had more than fifty members. It was also said 
that the Governor had forwarded five hundred stand of 
arms to Sioux City and they might be expected within a few 
days.'^^ Apparently both a mounted company and an in- 
fantry company were organized at Sioux City ; and on May 
18th the Frontier Rangers" elected officers — choosing 
James S. Morton as captain.*^ 

As summer advanced reports of a threatened Indian in- 
vasion grew more and more exaggerated as they spread 
farther from the frontier. ^^The Davenport Gazette^ \ said 
a Sioux City editor about the middle of June, ^'learns from 
Des Moines that three thousand Indians, apparently with 
hostile intent, were within fifty miles of Sioux City, and 
that the whole Northwestern part of the State was in great 
alarm from the apprehended attack. ' ' The editor emphat- 
ically denied the truth of any such assertion. There are 
no Indians, ^with hostile intent' encamped within 50 or 
more than 50 miles of Sioux City'', he declared. *^The 
depredations upon the property of citizens of this part of 
Iowa, have been committed by a roving band of four or five 
Indians, and thus far their operations have been confined 
to horse-stealing — not to scalp taking. "^^ 

Nevertheless, each week witnessed new cases of horse- 
stealing by Indians in Woodbury and Plymouth counties. 
The rangers from Sioux City, and settlers from Correc- 
tionville and other points several times went in pursuit of 
the redskins. In one case at least the pursuers caught up 

79 The Sioux City Eegister, May 18, 1861. 

A week later it was stated that the arms of the frontier company were 
' ' stored in the Post Office for safety, as well as in case of any emergency. ' ' — 
The Sioux City Eegister, May 25, 1861. 

80 The Sioux City Eegister, May 25, 1861. 

81 The Sioux City Eegister, June 15, 1861. 


with the robbers and engaged in a small skirmish ; but with 
the possible exception of a few wounds the Indians in each 
instance escaped unscathed.®^ 

A more serious episode, however, occurred on Tuesday, 
J une 9th, about three miles from Sioux City. On the morn- 
ing of that day Thomas Eoberts and Henry Cordua went 
out from town to plow a patch of potatoes. About noon 
they were shot in ambush by some Indians, who afterward 
made off with their horses — the murder apparently hav- 
ing been committed for the purpose of accomplishing the 
theft. When the crime was discovered late that night the 
news was at once taken to Sioux City and Captain Tripp 
and twenty mounted riflemen started in pursuit of the 

^^Capt. Tripp and his men followed the trail of the In- 
dians some 50 miles,'' according to the account in a Sioux 
City paper, when, owing to their having left in great haste, 
without taking time to prepare rations, they were com- 
pelled from exhaustion to abandon the chase and return 
home. Capt. Morton, with a detachment of mounted 
Rangers, being provided with provisions continued the pur- 
suit, but as we go to press we learn that he has returned to 
Melbourne without having succeeded in overtaking the In- 
dians. We are also informed that another detachment of 
Capt. Tripp's company are making arrangements to start 
in pursuit of the Indians, and that they will not return until 

82 The Sioux City Register, June 15, 22, 1861. 

"The troubles with the Indians on our Western borders are thickening. 
Since the 1st of April, according to the evidence of the Boyer Valley Becord, 
more than 30 horses have been stolen at Smithland, Correctionville, Ida Grove 
and other points." — The Iowa State Register (Des Moines), July 10, 1861. 

About this time the Mills County Mounted Minute Men proceeded to the 
vicinity of Sioux City to help in quieting the apprehensions of the settlers. — 
Council Blufs Nonpareil, July 13, 1861; The Sioux City Register, July 13, 
1861. The latter paper contains a roster of the company. 


they will have chastised the Indians, or exhausted all hope 
of finding them."^^ Apparently the latter result was ac- 
complished rather than the former, for there is no record 
that the culprits were captured or even overtaken. 

This episode naturally caused alarm in the northwestern 
counties, and again rumors of a general Indian war spread 
to distant points. At Des Moines a mounted company, com- 
manded by John Mitchell, was quickly raised. It proceeded 
at once to Sioux City, where it arrived on July 23rd, and 
remained in northwestern Iowa for several weeks.** 

The editor of the Sioux City Register did not believe 
there was danger of an attack by Sioux Indians in large 
numbers. But at the same time it was necessary that the 
settlers should be on the alert and prepared to meet any 
emergency. ' ' The tribe or tribes ' \ he said, ' ^ to which these 
murderers and thieves belong should be required to appre- 
hend and deliver them up for punishment. If they refuse 
to do this, then duty, safety and honor demand that the set- 
tlers should raise a sufficient force, invade their country 
and give them such treatment as murderers and their abet- 
tors merit. The time has arrived when the tribes to which 
these marauders belong, must receive bullets from Federal 
muskets instead of dollars from the Federal treasury. 
The agents for these tribes should see that their wards 
should not be allowed to leave the reservations under any 

83 The Sioux City Eegister, July 13, 1861. 

Captain Morton made a detailed statement one week later explaining, why 
the pursuit had been unfruitful, and recommending that the volunteer, half 
civilian and half military companies which were expected to protect the fron- 
tier should be replaced by a regular organization, well equipped, whose sole 
duty it should be to guard the frontier, and even to proceed into the Indian 
country. — The Sioux City Eegister, July 20, 1861. 

84T7ie Iowa State Eegister (Des Moines), July 17, 1861; The Sioux City 
Eegister, July 27, 1861. A roster of the company is printed in the latter 


pretext. * ^ It is difficult ' \ he continued, ^ ^ to distinguish the | 
difference between a friendly and a hostile Indian; and in 
the present state of feeling which exists in some sections 
upon the frontier, an Indian — be he friend or foe — holds 
his life by a very precarious tenure when within the range 
of a settler's rifle. ''^^ 

Indian horse-thieves continued to infest northwestern 
Iowa during the remainder of the summer and fall of 1861, 
and travelers on the roads leading to Sioux City were on 
several occasions attacked by small bands of Sioux outlaws, 
well mounted and armed. Both the Sioux City riflemen and* 
John Mitchell's company from Des Moines were kept on 
the frontier all summer to check the depredations as far as 
possible and give the settlers a feeling of security .^^ 

About the middle of August the Governor received | 
authority from the War Department to raise a company of j 
cavalry for the defense of the northwestern frontier in 
Iowa. The men in this company were to be mustered into 
United States service for a period of three years.^^ The 
company, which was known as the Sioux City Cavalry Com- 
pany, was recruited to the required strength by October 
and the election of officers occurred on the twelfth of that 
month: Andrew J. Millard was chosen captain; James A. 
Sawyers, first lieutenant; and Jacob T. Coplan, second 
lieutenant. On November 14th the men were mustered into 
United States service by Lieutenant George S. Hollister.^^ 

85 The Sioux City Begister, July 13, 1861. 

The Sioux City Begister, August 10, 17, September 7, 21, 28, 1861; The 
Iowa State Begister (Des Moines), September 18, 1861. 

87 The War of the Be'bellion: Official Becords, Ser. Ill, Vol. I, p. 410. 

88 The Sioux City Begister, October 19, November 16, 1861. 

For the roster of this company, which contains over one hundred names and 
in addition several which were rejected by the mustering officer, see the Beport 
of the Adjutant General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 648-651; Boster and Becord 
of Iowa Soldiers, Vol. IV, pp. 1773-1780. While the largest number of the 


During the fall and winter detachments of the company 
were stationed at Spirit Lake, Cherokee, and Correction- 
ville, to protect the exposed settlements in that region, but 
there is no record of their activities.^^ In his biennial mes- 
sage of January, 1862, Governor Kirkwood was able to 
report that tranquillity on the frontier had been preserved, 
and he expressed the hope that the cavalry company would 
prove sufficient for the protection of that portion of our 


The spring and early summer of 1862 passed without any 
recurrence of Indian alarm. In May, to be sure, a tempo- 
rary flurry of excitement was caused in Sioux City and the 
surrounding region by the report that Captain Millard's 
company had captured thirteen Indians. The news spread 
rapidly and with each re-telling it grew in importance, until 
finally there was a general belief that a large band of In- 
dians, led by Inkpaduta, was about to attack the settle- 
ments, when it was met by Captain Millard's company; and 
that in the ensuing conflict the Indians were defeated and 
Inkpaduta and twelve of his braves captured. The excite- 
ment quickly subsided when it was learned that the captives 
were an old Indian and his wife and eleven children, who 
were soon given safe escort to the borders of the State.^^ 

members resided in Sioux City, practically every settlement in northwestern 
Iowa was represented. A brief history of the company, in which there are 
some errors, is to be found in the Eoster and Eecord of Iowa Soldiers, Vol. IV, 
pp. 1771, 1772. The company became Company I of the Seventh Iowa Cavalry 
on July 14, 1863. 

89 The Sioux City Eegister, November 23, December 7, 1861. Late in Janu- 
ary, 1862, the company gave a ball in Sioux City to celebrate the arrival of 
their uniforms. — The Sioux City Eegister, January 11, February 1, 1862. 

90 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 279. 

91 The Sioux City Eegister, May 17, 1862. 


Three months later, like a thunderbolt out of a clear sky, 
came the news of the Indian outbreak in Minnesota. The 
summer of 1862 found many bands of the Sioux almost on 
the verge of starvation. Moreover, they were consumed 
with rage because their annuities, which should have been 
paid when the grass grew green in the spring, had not yet 
been distributed to them. Thus it was that the murder of 
five settlers on August 17th by a wandering party of Sioux 
hunters was the spark which kindled a great conflagration. 
Under the leadership of Little Crow the redskins took up 
the hatchet along the entire Minnesota frontier. At New 
Ulm and at other points not far above the northern boun- 
dary of Iowa in the next few days they perpetrated the 
bloodiest massacre in American history. The estimates of 
the number of white victims vary from five hundred to 
fifteen hundred, but the most careful count places the num- 
ber at more than six hundred and fifty.^^ 

The news of this massacre naturally spread terror 
throughout the frontier settlements. The extreme north- 
western corner of Iowa — roughly speaking, that portion 
cut off by a line drawn diagonally from Sioux City to 
Estherville — was the section of this State most exposed to 
danger because of the weakness of the settlements. But 
even as far into the interior as Fort Dodge and Webster 
City there was great alarm until reports of the defensive 
measures taken by Federal authorities and by Minnesota 
and Iowa gave assurance of a barrier against the south- 
ward movement of the Indians.®^ 

Sioux City was perhaps the point in Iowa where the ef- 

02 FolwelFs Minnesota: The North Star State, p. 211. Chapters XI, XII, 
and XIII in Professor Folwell's volume contain an excellent account of the 
Sioux outbreak and of subsequent military operations. This is a subject upon 
which an immense amount has been written. 

Hamilton Freeman (Webster City), August 30, 1862. 


I fects of the widespread alarm were most fully manifested, 
t It was the largest town in that region, and its location 

I made it the natural place of refuge for settlers not only 
from the adjoining counties in Iowa, but also from Dakota 
Territory and southwestern Minnesota. Saturday even- 
ing, night and Sunday forenoon there was a continuous 
train of wagons from Dakota into Sioux City'', runs a 

I newspaper account early in September. ^*In many cases 
the women and children were bare headed, bare footed, 
poorly clad, and almost destitute of provisions, showing 
the extreme hurry in which they left. Many did not stop 
here but kept on their way South. All had the most alarm- 
ing stories to relate of Indians which they had seen — 
burning houses, towns destroyed, &c. Saturday evening a 
messenger arrived here bringing the seemingly reliable 
intelligence that the Yanktons had risen and great danger 
was imminent. It is easier to imagine than describe the 

i excitement that such a state of things would necessarily 
produce on the exposed frontier. Happily the immediate 
danger was more imaginary than real, and many of the 
exciting rumors were without any sufficient foundation. 
Still all the settlers upon the frontier have become intensely 

j excited and alarmed. They have left their homes, and 

j property, and crops unharvested. Nor will they return in 

1 very many cases unless they are assured of safety from 

I marauding Indians."^* 

As Lieutenant Colonel H. C. Nutt hastened northward 
from Council BlufPs he found the road south of Sioux City 
^^ined with families leaving, and in such terror as to pre- 

i elude getting any reliable information. They were all 
bound to get away from the Indians." He endeavored to 

94 The Sioux City Eegister, September 13, 1862. See also the issue for 
August 30th. 


dissuade these fugitives from abandoning their homes, but 
generally without success. At Sioux City he found so many 
people that he concluded that practically all the settlers of 
northwestern Iowa had fled to that place for safety or had 
already gone farther south.^^ 

Preparations for defense were made all along the fron- 
tier as soon as the seriousness of the situation was fully 
realized. Volunteer companies were organized at Sioux 
City, Spirit Lake, Estherville, Algona, Fort Dodge, Webster 
City, and other points; and Captain Millard took his cav- 
alry company to Spirit Lake, where he found the settlers 
preparing to defend themselves in the courthouse in case of 
attack.^ ^ At Sioux City a fortification three hundred feet 
square was erected.^^ 

On August 29th Governor Kirkwood instructed Schuyler 
R. Ingham of Des Moines to proceed at once to Fort Dodge 
and other points in the northwest and to take such steps as 
he deemed necessary to protect the inhabitants of the fron- 
tier. ^'Arms and powder will be sent to you at Fort 
Dodge", he said. ^^Lead and caps will be sent with you. I 
hand you an order on the Auditor of State for one thousand 

95 The War of the Eehellion: Official Records, Ser. I, Vol. XIII, pp. 638, 639. 
The Sioux City Register, August 30, 1862; Hamilton Freeman (Webster 
City), August 30, 1862; Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, p. 482. 

Because of the lack of facilities for communication the news of the massacre 
was slow in reaching the settlements in Iowa; and at first little heed was paid 
to the stories on account of the fact that everyone was engrossed in the events 
of the war in the South. — See Ingham 's The Iowa Northern Border Brigade of 
1862-3 in the Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, pp. 481-523. 

In the opening pages of this article, William H. Ingham of Algona, who was 
captain of Company A of the Northern Border Brigade, tells of the early 
preparations for defense and of a trip which he and a companion made into 
Minnesota for the purpose of investigating the condition of affairs. 

87 The Sioux City Register, September 13, 1862. 

Report of the Adjutant General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, p. 861. 



Mr. Ingham immediately proceeded to carry out these 
instructions. He visited Webster Humboldt, Kossuth, 
Palo Alto, Emmet, and Dickinson counties, and found the 
settlers greatly excited. Many of them were leaving their 
homes and moving to the more thickly settled portions of 
the State. ''This feeling, however,'' he wrote in his report, 
"seemed to be more intense and to run higher in the more 
inland and remote counties from the border, than in the 
border counties themselves." In Emmet and Kossuth 
counties he called meetings of the settlers for the purpose 
of agreeing on measures to be taken. "They expressed 
themselves freely and were very temperate in their de- 
mands." All they considered necessary was a small force 
of mounted men to act in connection with the Sioux City 
Cavalry then stationed at Spirit Lake. But they insisted 
that this force "must be made up of men, such as they could 
j choose from amongst themselves, who were familiar with 
the country and had been engaged in hunting and trapping 
! for years, and were more or less familiar with the habits 
and customs of the Indians, one of which men would be 
worth half a dozen such as the State had sent up there on 
one or two former occasions." 

The raising of a company in Emmet, Palo Alto, Kossuth, 
and Humboldt counties was therefore authorized. "With- 
i in five days forty men were enlisted; held an election for 
I officers, were mustered in, furnished with arms and ammu- 
i nition, and placed on duty." Twenty men were stationed 
at Chain Lakes and twenty at Estherville. At Spirit Lake 
I Mr. Ingham found forty members of Captain Millard's 
I company, and aside from furnishing the settlers with arms, 
he considered further protection at this point unnecessary. 
At Fort Dodge he had obtained nearly two hundred "Aus- 
trian rifles ' ', forty-three ' ' Springfield muskets ' ', and a con- 


siderable quantity of ammunition. About one-third of the 
rifles and all of the muskets were placed where it was 
thought they were needed and would be of the most ser- 

Sioux City was amply defended. In addition to a portion 
of Captain Millard's cavalry and the volunteers who pre- 
pared to resist any possible Indian attack, the garrison of 
the town for a time included a squad of artillery from 
Council Bluffs and three companies of infantry from Coun- 
cil Bluffs and Harrison County. These latter companies 
had been raised for Federal service, but had not yet been 
mustered in; and consequently they had been ordered to 
Sioux City upon the receipt of the news of the Indian up- 
rising. Altogether Sioux City has a military look'', 
declared Editor Patrick Eobb. ^ ^ The 350 soldiers here are 
much of the time engaged in drill, and the shrill sound of 
the fife, the roll of drums, and notes of the bugle, are be- 
coming quite familiar. "^^^ These troops gave the people 
the needed feeling of security and soon restored their confi- 
dence. But Lieutenant Colonel Nutt believed that if he had 
taken them away immediately, he would also have taken 
with them ^' every woman and child at least, and most of 
the men."^*^2 

99 S. E. Ingham's report to Governor Kirkwood in the Report of the Adjutant 
General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 861-863. 

It should be said in this connection that Governor Kirkwood also commis- 
sioned George L. Davenport of Davenport to examine into and report upon the 
danger of an Indian attack upon the Iowa frontier. Mr. Davenport visited 
Minnesota, Nebraska Territory, Dakota Territory, and the Indians in Tama 
County, and made three reports in September and October. — Report of the 
Adjutant General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 867-869. 

100 The Sioux City Register, September 13, 20, 27, October 4, 11, 1862. 
301 The Sioux City Register, September 20, 1862. 

102 The War of the Rebellion: Official Records, Ser. I, Vol. XIII, p. 639. 



While these activities were in progress the General As- 
sembly convened in special session on September 3rd. 

Startling rumors have recently reached me of danger to 
our people on the North- Western Frontier, from hostile 
Indians said Governor Kirkwood in his message to the 
legislature. ^^I immediately despatched Schuyler R. Ing- 
ham, Esq., of Des Moines City, to the scene of danger, with 
arms and ammunition, and full authority to act as circum- 
stances might require. I have not yet had a report from 
him, but will immediately upon receipt of such report, com- 
municate with you by special message, should the emer- 
gency require your attention. ' ' 

The General Assembly, however, did not wait for a 
further communication from the Governor. Within three 
days, by an almost unanimous vote, both houses passed an 
act ^^to provide for the Protection of the North- Western 
Frontier of Iowa from Hostile Indians.'' By this law the 
Governor was authorized and required, to raise a volun- 
teer force in the State of Iowa from the counties most con- 
venient to the North- Western border of said State, of not 
less than five hundred mounted men, and such other force 
as he may deem necessary, to be mustered into service by a 
person to be appointed by the Governor, at such place as he 
may designate, to be stationed at various points in the 
North- Western counties of said State, in such numbers in a 
body as he may deem best for the protection of that portion 
of the State from hostile Indians, at the earliest possible 
moment. ' ' 

General regulations were provided for the organization 
of this force. The men were to be furnished as far as pos- 

103 Shambaugh 's Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of Iowa, Vol. 
II, p. 317. 

VOL. XVI — 25 


sible with arms belonging to the State. Each man was to 
furnish his own horse and subsistence; and was to receive 
the same compensation as was received by regular United 
States troops — the expense to be paid out of the State 
War and Defense Fund. The Governor might keep these 
troops in service as long- as he deemed necessary, and dur- 
ing that time they were to be exempt from the draft.^"^* 

This law was twice amended before the special session 
came to an end. In one case the Governor was authorized 
to furnish horses and subsistence if he deemed such action 
expedient. The other amendment was explanatory of the 
original act, which was ''to be understood to mean that the 
Governor of the State of Iowa is required to raise, arm, 
equip, and provide for the volunteer force in said Act pro- 
vided for, only at such times and in such manner as in his 
judgment the danger to the frontier settlers may require 
such action. ^"^^ 

The reason for this explanation is not entirely clear. Its 

104: Laws of Iowa, 1862 (Special Session), pp. 1, 2. See also Journal of the 
Senate, 1862 (Special Session), p. 20; and Journal of the House of Eepre- 
sentatives, 1862 (Special Session), p. 36. The bill was introduced by a special 
committee of the Senate, of which John F. Duncombe was chairman. 

It has been asserted to the writer by persons who were well acquainted with 
the facts that Governor Kirkwood did not desire the organization of the force 
provided for in this act, and that he did not deem it necessary. It has also 
been hinted that by some persons the raising of these companies was welcomed 
as an opportunity to escape the draft. The writer, however, has seen no docu- 
mentary evidence bearing out these assertions. 

The nearest approach is a letter written on September 19, 1862, by N. H. 
Brainerd, Military Secretary to Governor Kirkwood. In this letter he de- 
fended S. E. Ingham against criticism which had been made. "He never rep- 
resented that the alarm on the border was for the purposes of speculation", 
wrote Brainerd, ' ' but that some parties were endeavoring to speculate out of it 
by buying up the property of those who are fleeing from their homes and by 
others from the quartering of troops.'' ''Your reports", he said in another 
connection, ''come in large part from those who are badly scared or perhaps 
in some instances from those who have selfish ends to serve." — Kirkwood Mili- 
tary Letter Boole, No. 2, pp. 674, 675. 

105 Laws of Iowa, 1862 (Special Session), pp. 5, 16, 17. 


passage suggests that the Governor may have regarded the 
original law as a reflection upon his interest in frontier de- 
fense and upon the measures along that line which he had 
already taken. The action in the Senate lends color to this 
view. The amendment was introduced by Senator Alfred 
F. Brown. Immediately Senator Duncombe, who had intro- 
duced the original bill, moved to indefinitely postpone and 
demanded the yeas and nays. The vote was decisively 
against postponement. Senator Brown then moved that 
the eleventh rule be suspended and the bill read a third 
time. Again Senator Duncombe demanded the yeas and 
nays, and again the vote went against him. The bill was 
therefore read a third time and passed.^'^*^ It was not until 
after this explanatory amendment had been passed that 
Governor Kirkwood took steps to organize the frontier 
force contemplated in the law. 

On September 12th the Governor issued General Or- 
ders, No. 1'', announcing that, pursuant to the law just 
enacted, five companies would be accepted for frontier ser- 
vice : one to be raised at Sioux City, one at Denison, one at 
Fort Dodge, and one at Webster City, while the fifth was 
to consist of the company already stationed at Chain Lakes 
and Estherville. Each company was to contain not less 
than forty nor more than eighty members. Company offi- 
cers were to be elected in the manner prescribed by law; 
and afterwards an election, in charge of Mr. S. R. Ingham, 
was to be held to choose a Lieutenant Colonel to have com- 
mand of the entire force. The places at which the com- 
panies were to be stationed were to be selected first by Mr. 
Ingham and afterwards by the Lieutenant Colonel. 

^OG Journal of the Senate, 1862 (Special Session), pp. 65, 66. 

At this same session there was adopted a joint resolution requesting the 
Secretary of War to send troops to chastise the Indians who had committed 
the massacre in Minnesota. — Laws of Iowa, 1862 (Special Session), p. 51. 



Sufficient tools", the order stated, '^will be furnished 
to enable the men at such points as may be designated to 
erect block houses for quarters, and inclose grounds with a 
stockade. These houses and grounds are intended as rally- 
ing points in the future for the settlers in cases like the 
present, at which they can maintain themselves until help 
can reach them. This, in my judgment, is the only way in 
which security can ever be given to the border. The State 
cannot, and the United States will not, maintain an army all 
the time in the field for their protection, and unless some 
means can be devised by which the settlers can be prevented 
from abandoning their homes in case of alarm, it will be 
long before settlements will be made. These block houses, 
it seems to me, afford a means by which this may be done.'' 

"When in service the officers and men in these companies 
were to devote themselves exclusively to their duty. Ab- 
sences were to be granted only in case of sickness or for a i 
cause affecting the public interest. ^'Drunkenness of either 
officers, non-commissioned officers or privates, while on 
duty," said the Grovernor, ''will be deemed sufficient cause 
for dismissal from service without compensation or pay." 
Each man was required to furnish his own horse and equip- 
ments, but subsistence and forage would be furnished by 
the State. The compensation was to be the same as was 
"provided for like service by the United States ".^^^ 

On the following day Governor Kirkwood entrusted the 
execution of these orders to S. R. Ingham, who had reported 
for further instructions upon hearing of the law passed by 
the legislature. "It is impossible to foresee the contin- | 
gencies that may arise, rendering necessary a change in 
these orders or the prompt exercise of powers not herein j 
contained, and delay for the purpose of consulting me | 

-io"! Report of the Adjutant General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 863, 864. 


might result disastrously, ' ' said the Governor in his letter 
of instructions. ^^In order to avoid these results, as far as 
I possible, I hereby confer upon you all the powers I myself 
I have in this regard. You may change, alter, modify, or add 
to the orders named, as in your sound discretion you may 
deem best.''^^^ 

With these new instructions S. R. Ingham proceeded 
again to northwestern Iowa. First, according to his report 
made in November, he mustered into service four companies 
raised at Fort Dodge, Webster City, Denison, and Sioux 
City. The horses and equipments furnished by the men 
did not in all cases measure up to the requirements for 
I United States service, but under the circumstances they 
I were the best that could be secured. ^^One company was 
stationed at Chain Lakes, one at Estherville, and portions 
of companies at each of the following points, to-wit : Ochey- 
edan, Peterson, Cherokee, Ida, Sac City, Correctionville, 
I West Fork, Little Sioux, and Melbourne, thus forming, in 
conjunction with the portions of Capt. Millard's Company 
stationed at Sioux City and Spirit Lake, a complete line of 
communication between Chain Lakes and Sioux City.'' 

In accordance with the wishes of the settlers it was de- 
cided to erect block-houses and stockades at Correction- 
ville, Cherokee, Peterson, Estherville, and Chain Lakes, 
although in some instances the locations might not be 
I deemed the best from a technical military point of view. 
In most cases the settlers furnished timber with which to 
erect these fortifications, free of cost to the State, and 
helped in hauling it. But at Peterson the persons owning 
the largest tracts of timber land refused to furnish mate- 
rials, ^'without being paid five dollars per M., standing in 
the tree." Mr. Ingham did not hesitate to give orders to 

108 Beport of the Adjutant General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, p. 864. 


disregard this ungenerous attitude in case other timber 
could not be secured. In some localities, where timber was 
scarce, sod was used to good advantage. At Spirit Lake 
the brick courthouse, with a surrounding stockade which 
had already been built, offered substantial protection. 

The chief difficulty in maintaining a force of mounted 
men in that region was in securing the required amount of 
forage at reasonable prices. The men immediately put up 
some hay upon their arrival at their posts, but the season 
was so far advanced that a sufficient quantity could not be 
secured in that manner. ^^Corn and oats are raised in but 
limited quantities, as yet, in the immediate vicinity of the 
posts,'' said Mr. Ingham, ''and what surplus the inhabit- 
ants have to dispose of is held at extremely high prices, 
when it is considered that they have no market for it except 
the one created by the demand for supplies for the use of 
the troops. Most of the corn and oats have to be hauled 
from twenty to sixty miles, which increases the cost very 
materially by the time they are delivered at the posts. 
Still, notwithstanding these difficulties, up to this time. 
Quartermaster Lewis H. Smith, through his indomitable 
energy and perseverance has been able to supply them at 
comparatively low prices". 

On November 7th an election for Lieutenant Colonel was 
held, and the choice fell to James A. Sawyers, who formerly 
had been first lieutenant in the Sioux City Cavalry Com- 
pany. With this event responsibility was shifted chiefly to 
the new commander, and Mr. Ingham submitted a lengthy 
report to the Governor. He did not think it would be neces- 
sary to keep the entire force in service after the completion 
of the block-houses and stockades: three companies would 
then afford ample protection to the frontier. 

iw> Report of the Adjutant General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. IT, pp. 864-866. This 


The history of the Northern Iowa Border Brigade is 
largely the record of the erection of the line of fortifications 
in northwestern lowa.^^^ Lieutenant Colonel Sawyers vis- 
ited the posts immediately after receiving his commission, 
and made a report covering the work done up to the first of 
December. Stables, small block-houses, and cabins had 
been erected at several points, but the work on the more 
important fortifications had only been begun.^^^ 

Fort-building, however, did not occupy all the time of the 
men in these companies. ''In addition to this", wrote one 
of the captains many years later, ''there were the camp 
duties, drilling, scouting, target practice, and the keeping 
up of communication between the different posts and the 
U. S. forces at Fairmont, Minn., and at Sioux City. Now 
and then government dispatches were passed along the line, 
and whenever of great importance they were sent through 
from post to post on limited time. This service came to be 
known as the 'pony express.' A part of the brigade was 
supplied with Austrian rifles from Gen. Fremont's famous 
purchase. While they were not the best, they were prob- 
ably the best that could be obtained at that time. Many of 
the cartridges were defective so that when discharged it 

report is also to be found in Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, pp. 

On November 22, 1862, Quartermaster Lewis H. Smith made a report to 
S. E. Ingham, giving a detailed statement of the arms and ammunition received 
and of the manner of their disposition. — Eeport of the Adjutant General 
(Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 866, 867. 

110 Eosters of the five companies may be found in the Eeport of the Adjutant 
General (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 672-680; and also in the Annals of Iowa 
(Third Series), Vol. V, pp. 513-523. 

The captains of the five companies were as follows: William H. Ingham, 
Company A; William Williams, Company B; Harvey W. Crapper, Company C; 
James M. Butler, Company D; and Jerome M. White, Company E. 

111 Eeport of Lieutenant Colonel Sawyers in the Eeport of the Adjutant Gen- 
eral (Iowa), 1863, Vol. II, pp. 869, 870. 


became a question as to the direction in which they were 
likely to do the most harm". The Indians did not trouble 
the Iowa frontier that winter; although in March, 1863, the 
massacre of some settlers in Minnesota again caused all 
sorts of wild rumors, and the presence of the troops helped 
to quiet the excitement.^^^ 

Companies B and D soon completed the fortifications 
which they had been assigned to build, and were mustered 
out of service — their places being taken by detachments 
from the other companies.^^^ It was not until the spring 
and summer of 1863 that Lieutenant Colonel Sawyers was 
able to make a final report upon the work done at the other 

Of all these frontier fortifications apparently the most 
extensive was "Fort Defiance" at Estherville, built by 
Company A under Captain William H. Ingham. The 
stockade of this "fort" was built of planks four inches 
thick and enclosed an area which was about one hundred 
and thirty feet square. At one corner and extending six 
feet beyond the stockade were the barracks, "a building 
fifty-two feet in length, eighteen feet in width, made of 
timbers eight inches thick". The office and commissary 
room at another corner was a building fourteen by thirty- 
two feet in dimensions, built in much the same manner as 
the barracks. The entire south side of the enclosure was 
formed by a barn, the sides of which were covered with 
boards an inch thick, while the ends were built of four-inch 
planks. The exposed side of the barn was protected by "a 

112 Ingham's The Iowa Northern Border Brigade of 1862-3 in the Annals of 
Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, pp. 499, 501. This article is accompanied by 
numerous portraits of officers in the brigade and drawings of the fortifications 
which were erected. 

113 Ingham's The Iowa Northern Border Brigade of 1862-3 in the Annals of 
Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, p. 501. 


sod wall, five feet at its base and two feet wide on top, seven 
and one-half feet high^'. Within the stockade were a guard- 
house, a well furnishing ^ ^ an abundance of excellent water 
and a flag-staif.^^^ 

The preparations for defense at other points were less 
elaborate but equally well adapted to repel an Indian at- 
tack. The block-houses and officers' quarters at Peterson, 
for instance, were built of oak and ash timbers ten inches 
square, with roofs of soft maple boards. The stockade was 
constructed of timbers six inches square. In each case the 
stockade surrounded an area large enough to accommodate 
a considerable number of settlers with their live-stock and 

Companies A, C, and E of the Northern Border Brigade 
remained in service until late in September, 1863. On the 
twenty-sixth of that month Adjutant General Baker of Iowa 
issued an order disbanding the brigade, and authorizing 
the formation of a single company to take its place. This 
company was soon organized, with William H. Ingham as 
its captain, and remained in service for about three months, 
with headquarters at Estherville. Then after considerable 
correspondence Adjutant General Baker succeeded in in- 
ducing Brigadier General Sully to detail United States 
troops for the protection of the Iowa frontier, thus reliev- 
ing the State of that duty. On November 21st Baker issued 
an order stating that Captain Ingham's company would be 

114 Letter of Lieutenant Colonel Sawyers to Governor Kirkwood, June 8, 
1863, in the Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, pp. 504, 505. A photo- 
graph of the fort faces p. 505. See also pp. 499, 503, for references to the 
building of the fort. 

115 For descriptions in letters written hj Lieutenant Colonel Sawyers and for 
drawings of the defenses at Peterson, Cherokee, Correctionville, and Iowa Lake 
see the Annals of Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, pp. 496, 500, 501, 503, 504. 
The letters of Lieutenant Colonel Sawyers to Governor Kirkwood may also be 
found in the Eeport of the Adjutant General (Iowa), 1864, pp. 665-669. 


disbanded on January 1, 1864, unless sooner relieved by 
United States troops.^^^ 

Late in December Captain Ingham received a letter from 
General Sully at Sioux City stating that a squad of cav- 
alry from his command would report at Estherville on the 
morning of Dec. 30 to relieve the state troops and take pos- 
session of the post. The members of the company were 
soon called together and notified to be fully prepared for 
the coming event. At about ten o'clock the next morning 
the troops made their appearance and lined up outside of 
the gates. Quite soon after the state troops with all their 
effects passed out and left the works to be taken in charge 
by U. S. troops. And so ended the services of the last 
members of the Northern Border Brigade. "^^^ 

Detachments of the Sixth Iowa Cavalry remained on the 
Iowa frontier until mustered out of service in 1865. The 
Indians, however, had long since ceased to be a menace to 
the settlers, most of whom had returned to their homes as 
soon as protection had been assured. The Sioux had been 
severely chastised by United States troops in 1862, 1863, 
and 1864 in vigorous campaigns in Minnesota and Da- 
kota. The close of the Civil War, therefore, also marks 
the end of the Indian problem in Iowa. There was no 
longer an Indian frontier in this State. 

Dan Elbekt Clakk 

The State Historical Society of Iowa 
Iowa City Iowa 

T-ic> Report of the AdjutoM General (Iowa), 1864, pp. 669-673. 

117 Ingham's The Iowa Northern Border Brigade of 1862-3 in the Annals of 
Iowa (Third Series), Vol. V, p. 510. 

118 For an account of these campaigns see Folwell's Minnesota: The North 
Star State, Chs. XI-XIII; and Eobinson's A History of the Balcota or Sioux 
Indians, Chs. XXVI-XXXI, in the South Balcota Historical Collections, Vol. 


The adoption of the selective draft to raise an army for 
the World War has revived interest in the discussion rela- 
tive to the ages of soldiers during the Civil War. So many 
incorrect statements on the subject appear in print and are 
heard from the platform that in the interest of truth the 
matter deserves careful investigation. In the last few 
months a religious paper stated that the average age of the 
Civil War veterans at the close of the war was nineteen. 
Recently a prominent Grand Army man declared that there 
were a million soldiers in the Civil War who were under 
sixteen years of age ; while a leading educator asserted that 
one-third of the men in the armies of the sixties were under 
sixteen. Some false statistics purporting to have been com- 
piled from the official records at Washington went the 
rounds of the press about fourteen years ago and furnished 
some grounds for the extravagant statements quoted above. 
The following are the ages as given in these so-called of- 
ficial statistics: 

Age Number 















and under 




























These figures, claiming to be official, evidently made a 
deep impression on the country. They were filed away by 
teachers, preachers, lawyers, members of Congress, and 
others, and they have been given to the public on Memorial 
Days and other patriotic occasions so often that one may 
seem rash to question their accuracy. The more the writer 
studied the figures, however, the more he became satisfied 
that they could not possibly be correct. A letter was writ- 
ten to the Adjutant General at Washington, asking whether 
the figures were official. He replied that the War Depart- 
ment was the only department that could make such a tabu- 
lation of ages and that this had never been done. He 
further added that the tabulation was '^baseless and mis- 
leading" and entitled to no credit whatever". 

Thousands of letters have gone out from the Adjutant 
General's office to correct these false figures, but without 
avail. On the twenty-sixth of April, 1917, Hon. Julius 
Kahn of California addressed the Adjutant General, ask- 
ing information concerning the correctness of the figures 
in question. The Adjutant General replied in language 
almost identical with that used in his letter to the present 
writer, stating that the figures had no official sanction what- 
ever. Yet in August, 1917, Lieutenant General S. B. M. 
Young, in making a plea that the draft age should be re- 
duced to nineteen, quoted the same erroneous figures and 
said that they were from the official records". Quoted by 
one so high in rank, they will have a new lease of life and 
continue to hide the truth. 

It will be seen that in this so-called tabulation of ages 
that more than ninety-eight per cent of the soldiers were 
under twenty-five years of age and less than two per cent 
were twenty-five years old or older. A very little investi- 
gation will show how absurd these figures are. 



One who served in an army like Sherman 's, with its seven 
corps, and saw the men under all possible conditions — on 
the march, in camp, on picket duty, on the skirmish line, in 
battle, and on parade — has a good general impression as 
to whether the army was composed largely of boys in their 
early teens or whether it was made up of men eighteen, 
twenty-five, thirty-five years of age or older. This impres- 
sion, however, has been verified by a careful study of the 

The ages of the veterans now living will give some idea 
of their ages at the time of the Civil War. It must be kept 
in mind, however, that about seven-eighths of the men who 
served in the Civil War have died, and that the one-eighth 
now living are men somewhat younger than the average. 
Naturally the older men have passed away in the fifty-seven 
years since the war began. 

Another means of determining the approximate ages of 
the Civil War veterans is the list of deaths published in the 
National Tribune almost every week. Occasionally an age 
will be given as low as 69 and others as high as 95 or even 
100, but the average is about 76 or 77, as may be easily 
noted. Of course these veterans who are dying each week 
are the older men, but they are the older members of a rem- 
nant comprising not more than one-eighth of the total 
strength of the Union armies during the Civil War. 

The records of the pension office make it plain that the 
number of very young soldiers was small. The exact ages of 
individuals are not given, but they are divided into groups. 
On June 30, 1917, there were 329,226 survivors of the Civil 
War enrolled as pensioners. Of this number 38,190 receive 
pensions on account of general disability. The remaining 
291,036 receive pensions in accordance with their length of 
service and ages. The table showing their ages in 1917 is 
as follows: 


62 years and under 66 3,113 

66 and under 70 28,966 

70 years and under 75 121,476 

75 years and over. 137,481 

Total 291,036 

It will be seen from tM« table that those of the youngest 
class form less than one per cent of the total number of 
pensioners, and a little over one per cent of those who are 
classed by ages. The largest class of pensioners consists 
of those who are seventy-five or older, and the next class is 
composed of those from seventy to seventy-four years of 
age. It would be interesting to know the actual ages of 
those who are the youngest and what their service was. 
Some of them doubtless were musicians and orderlies, but 
others of them must have served in the ranks. 

The average age of soldiers in one State during the Civil 
War will be found to be practically the same as that in 
other States. There is no reason why there should be any 
difference, except in an occasional instance where a regi- 
ment was raised for a special purpose. Minnesota has pub- 
lished a roster of the soldiers from that State, and the ages 
have been tabulated. The whole number of soldiers is 
20,520. In 519 cases no ages have been given. Of the num- 
ber whose ages are given just 30 are fifteen years old or 
under. This is a small per cent and it is the writer's belief 
that other States would make a similar showing. Of those 
sixteen years old there are 105, and of those seventeen years 
old there are 226. Of those who enlisted at the age of 
eighteen there are 2291 — more men enlisting at that age 
than at any other. Indeed, eighteen seems to have been the 
age at which the largest number of men enlisted in all the 

According to the so-called official records less than two 
per cent should have enlisted at the age of twenty-five or 



j older. In Minnesota, however, more than fifty per cent en- 
i listed at twenty-five or older. Nearly sixteen hundred en- 
listed at the age of forty or over. There were ninety-three 
I who enlisted at the age of 45, and fifty-four who enlisted at 
the age of 46 or older. 

In an Ohio regiment over nineteen per cent of the men 
enlisted at the age of 18, and over forty per cent enlisted at 
the age of 25 and over. In a New York command more men 
enlisted at the age of 18 than at any other age, one enlisted 
at 17, and more than forty per cent enlisted at the age of 25 
and over. The roster of the Twenty-second Maine tells 
practically the same story. One hundred and fifty-three 
enlisted at the age of 18, and there were none younger. 
I More than thirty-eight per cent enlisted at 25 or older. 
I Twenty-six were 44 years old. More than half of the regi- 
j ment would not have been subject to the draft under the 
present laws. 

The ages of Iowa soldiers have not been tabulated so 
i systematically as those of Minnesota. The facts, however, 
may be ascertained approximately. At an ordinary reunion 
it is seldom that one enrolls who is as young as seventy 
years or under. At the great reunion at Vicksburg in 
t October, 1917, there were 216 soldiers on the Iowa train 
I and their average age was seventy-six years and two 
months. The oldest men did not venture to make the trip, 
j These facts tend to show that the surviving veterans who 
were very youthful at the time of their service are not 
I numerous. 

j In the Census of Iowa for 1915 the ages of the 13,059 
veterans then living in the State are given in groups. Of 
course three years must now be added to the ages given in 
this table. There were then living in the State five soldiers 
67 years old ; one hundred and forty 68 years old ; and two 




hundred and seventy-eight 69 years old. It is regretted 
that their ages at enlistment are not given. It is evident, 
however, that these 428 men in the first three groups were 
16 years old or younger. Some of them doubtless were 
drummers or cooks, but many of them must have carried 
muskets. The group that has the largest number is the one 
in which the men if now living would be 73 years old. The 
number is 1371. The next largest group is that in which 
the men if now living would be 75 years old, and this group 
contains 1205 men. When this census was taken, there 
were 1453 men who had reached the eighties or beyond. 
• There were fifty-one in the nineties. Two were ninety-nine. 

In 1910 the rosters of the Iowa regiments were published, 
giving the age of each soldier at time of enlistment, to- 
gether with other important facts. The writer has tabu- 
lated the ages of the men in several of the regiments and 
the results obtained are interesting. In all the regiments 
there are a few men whose ages are not given; and these 
men have not been counted. 


The Second Iowa Infantry enrolled in all 1380 men. One 
was enrolled at the age of 14 ; two at the age of 15 ; four at 
the age of 16; eleven at the age of 17. Three only were 
enrolled under the age of 16 and this is a very small per 
cent. One hundred and sixty-seven were enrolled at the 
age of 18 — the largest number at any one age. Forty 
were enrolled at the age of 40 or older. One was 63 years 
old. Those under twenty-five numbered 961 ; those twenty- 
five and over numbered 419. These percentages are very 
different from those given in the so-called official record. 
It is interesting to note that 634 men of the regiment would 
not have been subject to the draft under the present law. 




In the Fifth Iowa Infantry one man was enrolled at the 
age of 15, and he served as a drummer. One hundred and 
thirty-five were enrolled at the age of 18. Thirty-four were 
enrolled at the age of 40 and older. One was 47 and one 48. 
Six hundred and ninety enrolled under the age of 25. Three 
hundred and forty-one enrolled at the age of 25 and older. 


In this regiment four men were enrolled at 16 and four at 
17 years of age. There were none under 16 years of age. 
Two hundred and sixty-three were enrolled at 18 years. 
Four hundred and eighty-three were under 21 years of age 
and four hundred and six were over 30 years old. Those 
who would not have been reached by the present draft law 
numbered eight hundred and eighty-nine. The number who 
were 25 or older numbered seven hundred and sixty-five, 
and these amounted to more than sixty per cent of the men 
in the regiment. According to the official record the per- 
centage should have been less than two. Those 40 years 
old or more numbered one hundred and seven. Twenty- 
five were 44 ; two were 45 ; one was 48 ; and one was 56. 


Of the field and staff officers of this regiment two were 
40 years old, two were 38, two were 37, and two were 36. 
The Sergeant Major was 50. The ages of the enlisted men 
are indicated in the following table : 

Age Number Age Number 

14 years old 1 20 years old 80 

15 years old 3 21 years old 72 

17 years old 15 22 years old 64 

18 years old 258 23 years old 65 

19 years old 106 24 years old 38 

VOL. XVI — 26 


Age Number Age Number 

25 years old 34 39 years old 4 

26 years old 30 40 years old 14 

27 years old 34 41 years old 9 

28 years old 32 42 years old 12 

29 years old 19 43 years old 13 

30 years old 23 44 years old 19 

31 years old 15 45 years old 15 

32 years old 18 46 years old 2 

33 years old 9 47 years old 

34 years old 18 48 years old 2 

35 years old 15 49 years old 1 

36 years old 7 50 years old 1 

37 years old. 11 58 years old 1 

38 years old 18 

It will be seen from this table that four hundred and 
sixty-three of the enlisted men were under 21, but that only 
nineteen of them were under 18 years of age. It will also 
be noted that three hundred and ninety-six were 25 years 

old or older, or nearly 37 per cent of the enlisted men. 


In the Twenty-fifth Iowa one man enlisted at the age of 
15, one at 16, and four enlisted at 17. At the age of 18 two 
hundred and twenty-eight men enlisted and at 19 one hun- 
dred and eighteen enlisted. Those who enlisted under 21 
numbered four hundred and twenty. Those who enlisted 
at the age of 25 or older numbered four hundred and 
thirty-four. More than half of the regiment would not have 
been subject to the draft under the present law. Of the 
field and staff officers two were 40 years old, one 41, one 43, 
one 45, and one 54. 


In the Twenty-ninth Infantry two men enlisted at 15 
years of age, two at 16, eleven at 17, and two hundred and 



eighty at 18. Six hundred and sixty were 25 years old or 
older — a little more than forty-five per cent of the whole 
regiment. The percentage of men under 16 years of age is 
j so small that it is negligible. Those who enlisted under 21 
numbered four hundred and sixty-eight ; those over 30 num- 
bered three hundred and three; that is, in a regiment of 
1452 men those who would not have been subject to present 
draft law numbered seven hundred and seventy-one, or 
more than fifty-three per cent. Sixty-nine were 40 years 
old or older, two being 48 and one 49. 


In this regiment one hundred and thirty-seven men en- 
listed at 18, one at 12, one at 16, eleven at 17, sixteen at 44, 
j one at 45, one at 46, one at 48, and one at 59. Those who 
I enlisted while under 21 years of age numbered three hun- 
I dred and thirty, and those who were over 30 numbered one 
! hundred and ninety-eight ; that is, five hundred and twenty- 
eight, or more than half the regiment, would not have been 
subject to the draft to-day. Those who were 25 years old 
and older numbered three hundred and ninety-nine. 


The following is a complete 
men in this regiment : 

Age Number 

17 years old 2 

18 years old 135 

19 years old 79 

20 years old 61 

21 years old 62 

22 years old 62 

23 years old 49 

24 years old 53 

25 years old 61 

tabulation of the ages of the 

Age Number 

26 years old 34 

27 years old 42 

28 years old 35 

29 years old 50 

30 years old 48 

31 years old 20 

32 years old 31 

33 years old 29 

34 years old 26 


Agp Number Age Number 

35 years old 20 42 years old 15 

36 years old 22 43 years old 14 

37 years old 19 44 years old 9 

38 years old 18 47 years old 1 

39 years old 14 60 years old 1 

40 years old 11 62 years old 1 

41 years old 15 

This seems to have been a typical regiment. Its size was 
about normal and it apparently did not receive many re- 
cruits. There were two hundred and seventy-seven men 
under 21, and two hundred and sixty-six over 30; that is, 
five hundred and forty-three would not be subject to the 
draft to-day. The regiment numbered 1039, and of these 
five hundred and thirty-six were 25 years old or older — 
more than fifty-one per cent. 


The Thirty-seventh Iowa has a history that is a little un- 
usual. It was enlisted for guard and garrison duty and 
was composed mostly of men 45 years old or older. The 
men were known as the ^'Greybeards" and they deserved 
the title. The regiment did guard duty in several States 
and also saw some real soldiering in Tennessee and Missis- 
sippi, guarding trains. The ages of the older men were as 
follows : 

Men from 50 to 59 years old 428 

Men sixty years old or older 145 

Eighty years old 1 

The men were patriotic and reliable in every way and 
they performed a service that was very valuable. They 
were too old for active service in the South and many suf- 
fered from sickness. One hundred and forty-five died from 
disease, three were killed, and three hundred and sixty-four 
were discharged for disability. The statement is made that 
not a man of the regiment is now living, and this is probably 



true, although a very few young men were enlisted in the 
regiment for special duties. 


Iowa furnished a few regiments for the hundred day ser- 
vice in 1864 and the writer has tabulated the ages of the 
Forty-fourth Infantry. The ages run a little lower than 
the other regiments. In this regiment two enlisted at the 
age of 14 and two at 15 — all four serving as musicians. 
Twelve enlisted at the age of 16, and twenty-seven at the 
age of 17. Two hundred and seventy-two men enlisted at 
the age of 18, which was the popular age for enlisting as 
indicated in all the rosters examined. 


In this regiment one man enlisted at 15 years of age, four 
at 16, twenty at 17, and one hundred and ninety-four at 18. 
Four hundred and fifty-nine were under 21, and two hun- 
dred and ninety were over 30. There were five hundred 
and three men who were 25 or over. Eighty-five were 40 or 
over. One was 50, one 51, and one 56. 


The ages of the men in this battery were as follows : 

Age Number Age Number 

18 years old 52 32 years old 3 

19 years old 32 33 years old 3 

20 years old 13 34 years old 4 

21 years old 14 35 years old 3 

22 years old 15 36 years old 8 

23 years old 13 37 years old 3 

24 years old 16 38 years old 2 

25 years old 16 39 years old 1 

26 years old 15 40 years old 2 

27 years old 13 41 years old 3 

28 years old 8 42 years old 1 

29 years old 4 43 years old 3 

30 years old 1 44 years old 4 

31 years old 4 45 years old 2 


In this organization the largest number of enlistments 
took place at 18 years of age. Those under 25 numbered 
one hundred and fifty-five; those 25 and over numbered one 
hundred and three. The latter class formed about forty 
per cent of the whole number. 


In this battery one man enlisted at 15, six at 17, and 
twenty-one at 18. One hundred and two enlisted under 25, 
and sixty-three at 25 or over. One enlisted at 47 and one 
at 48. 


In this organization fifty-five men enlisted at 18. One 
hundred and twenty-one enlisted under 25, and thirty-seven 
at 25 or over. There were none under 18. 

There is every reason to believe that the ages of the men 
in the regiments above analyzed fairly represent the ages 
of the Civil War veterans. The regiments were not selected 
to prove either the youth or the age of the men. The pur- 
pose was to analyze representative regiments from various 
branches of the service, and also to select regiments re- 
cruited at various periods in the war. Indeed, there was 
no preconceived idea as to what the examination would 
reveal. One element enters into these estimates that can 
not be exactly determined. Some men enlisted as 18 when 
their ages were under that. There is no way to determine 
how many of these enlistments there were. The ages of the 
soldiers now living and the pension rolls show that the 
per cent must have been small. 

While no attempt has been made in this investigation to 
determine the average age of all the soldiers from Iowa, the 
ages of the men in two regiments were averaged. The 



average age of the men of the Twenty-ninth Iowa Infantry 
was a little more than twenty-five and one-third years. The 
average age of the men in the Second Iowa Cavalry was 
almost twenty-four and a half years. If there had been 
about a quarter of a million boys sixteen years of age or 
younger in the ranks, the average would have been much 
lower than the figures just given. 

A careful study of the ages of the soldiers given in the 
rosters examined must lead to these conclusions: (1) there 
were not so many soldiers under 16 as is indicated in those 
erroneous figures still going the rounds of the press; (2) 
there were many more soldiers 25 years old and older than 
the so-called ^ ^ official records ' ' indicate, since these records 
make the number at 25 and older as less than two per cent, 
while thirty or forty per cent would be nearer the truth; 
(3) more men enlisted at 18 than at any other age; (4) a 
goodly number entered the service at 17, but comparatively 
the aggregate was not large; and (5) some men entered at 
ages from 10 to 16, but the per cent was very small; and 
some of the men in this class were drummers, orderlies, 
cooks, and engaged in other detached service, although 
there were others very young who served in the ranks, car- 
ried muskets, and did their part on the battle front. Among 
these youthful soldiers it is fitting to name Dr. William M. 
Beardshear who was so well and so favorably known in 
Iowa. He entered the service at the age of fourteen and 
did the work of a man. 

W. W. Gist 

Iowa State Teachers College 
Cedar Falls Iowa 


[The following paper by Professor Schmidt was read before the American 
Historical Association in Philadelphia on December 27, 1917. Professor 
Schmidt is preparing a comprehensive history of agriculture in Iowa for future 
publication by The State Historical Society of Iowa. — Editor] 

John Stuart Mill once wrote, in recording Ms impres- 
sions of the attitude of England toward the North and the 
South during the Civil War, that ^Hhe inattention habitual 
with Englishmen to whatever is going on in the world out- 
side their own island, made them profoundly ignorant of 
all the antecedents of the struggle. ' ' ^ This criticism might 
have been applied with equal fairness to the American 
people on the eve of the present great world war. Sep- 
arated from the affairs of Europe, they had developed a 
provincialism in their outlook and habits of thinking which 
tended to make them oblivious to the age-long rivalries and 
ambitions of the Nations of the old world. Favored by 
geography and by the delicate balance of power in Europe 
which had prevented interference in the affairs of the west- 
ern hemisphere, they had come to dwell with complacency 
on the superiority of American institutions and on the des- 
tiny of the republic, when suddenly they were bewildered 
by the great world cataclysm with whose origin they were 

1 For a brief discussion of the importance of agriculture in American his- 
tory, see the writer's paper on The Economic History of American Aqricnlture 
as a Field for Study in The Mississippi Valley Historical Eeview, Vol. Ill, 
pp. 39-49. 

2 Mill's Autobiography, p. 2G9. 



only vaguely familiar and the ultimate purposes of which 
they little understood. 

Students and writers of American history reflecting the 
attitude of the people have similarly shown an inclination 
to take a rather narrow and provincial view of our national 
past and thus to neglect a consideration of the external 
forces which have conditioned our development. Foreign 
affairs have therefore not received their proportionate 
share of emphasis in the study of American history. Such 
treatment as has been accorded to our foreign relations has 
tended rather to accentuate the more dramatic episodes of 
politics and diplomacy, and to neglect, if not to ignore, 
economic and commercial forces which have played a very 
significant role in international affairs. 

The recent entrance of the United States into the great 
world struggle for the preservation of democratic institu- 
tions marks a definite departure from our time-honored 
policy of isolation. Furthermore, it brings home to the 
historian the imperative need of heeding the warning of 
the late Rear-Admiral Mahan, who wrote nearly twenty 
years ago, just as this Nation crossed the threshold to world 
empire, that it is time for us to abandon our provincial 
attitude and to take the larger or the long view of the forces 
which have shaped our national destiny.^ Our new position 
as a world power of the first rank requires a better under- 
standing of these forces in order that a broad and far- 
sighted statesmanship may be brought to bear on the 
formulation of the Nation's foreign policies in the future. 

3 Mahan 's The Problem of Asia in Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Vol. 
100, March, 1900, pp. 536-547. This paper is reprinted in Chapter I of his 
book on The Problem of Asia, published in 1900. It is not without significance 
that the writings of this foremost authority on the influences of sea power in 
history have been much more widely read in England and Japan and on the 
continent of Europe than in this country. 


In directing attention to the study of the history of the for- 
eign relations of the United States, considerable emphasis 
should be accorded to economic forces which in the past 
have had a profound influence on international politics and 
diplomacy, and which are to-day recognized as potent forces 
in the world war. 

It is the aim of this paper to emphasize the fundamental 
significance of wheat and cotton in the study of Anglo- 
American relations during one of the most critical periods 
of our history : the period of the Civil War.^ In essaying 
this task it is proposed: first, to determine the extent to 
which Great Britain was economically dependent on the 
American supply of these two staple commodities while the 
North and South were engaged in civil conflict ; and, second, 
to inquire how far this double dependence on America was 
recognized when intervention in behalf of the Confederacy 
was most seriously threatened. It will then be possible to 
estimate the relative influence of these factors in deter- 

4 For a general review of Anglo-American relations during the Civil War see 
the following accounts: Foster's Century of American Diplomacy, Ch. X; Fish's 
American Diplomacy, Ch. XXII; Johnson's America's Foreign Belations, Vol. 
Ill, Chs. XXI, XXII; Callahan's Diplomatic History of the Southern Confed- 
eracy; Callahan's Diplomatic Belations of the Confederate States with Eng- 
land, 1861-1365, in the Annual Beport of American Historical Association, 
1898, pp. 267-283; Davis's Confederate Government, Vol. II, pp. 245-284, 
367-381; Dunning 's The British Empire and the United States, Ch. V; 
Hosmer's Appeal to Arms (The American Nation, Vol. XX), Ch. XX; Hos- 
mer's Outcome of the Civil War (The American Nation, Vol. XXI), Ch. X; 
Ehodes's History of the United States, 18.50-1877, Vol. Ill, pp. 415-434, 
503-543, Vol. IV, pp. 76-95, 337-394; Schouler's History of the United States, 
Vol. VI, pp. 111-130, 261-274, 424-436; Morse's Abraham Lincoln, Vol. I, Ch. 
XII; Lathrop's William H. Seward, Chs. XVI-XX; Storey's Charles Sumner, 
Chs. XIII-XV; Adams's Charles Francis Adams, Chs. IX-XVIII; Baker's 
The Worlcs of William H. Seward (New Edition), Vol. V. The last named 
volume contains a diplomatic history of the war for the Union. 


mining Great Britain's official attitude toward the Union 
and Confederate governments.^ 

The Confederacy was dependent upon the outside world 
for many of its necessities. The first problem of the Union 
government therefore was to cut off the commerce of the 
South and then exhaustion of the Confederacy would be 
only a matter of time; whereas, with commerce open, the 
war would continue indefinitely, with strong chances that 
the Confederacy would ultimately be victorious. The main- 
tenance of the blockade proclaimed by President Lincoln 
on April 19, 1861, depended first upon the efficiency of our 
navy; and second, upon the neutrality of foreign nations. 
The policy of the Confederacy, on the other hand, was to 
break the blockade : first, by the use of privateering vessels ; 
and, second, by the aid of European intervention. 

5 That sympathy for the Confederacy was the prevailing sentiment among all 
classes of people in England, except the laboring classes and a part of the 
middle class, history has already clearly shown. The influences operating to set 
the current of opinion against the Union government during the first year of 
the war were as follows: 

(1) The privileged classes, that is, the nobility and the landed gentry, 
feared the rapid development of the American republic. They regarded its 
growing power and influence with ill-disguised disfavor and pronounced it a 
standing menace. Their sympathies, on the other hand, were with the slave- 
holding aristocracy, with whom they had a sentiment of fellowship. They 
looked upon the breaking up of the Union with pleasant anticipations. More- 
over, the opinions of these classes were reflected in the minds of many who 
came into social relations with them. 

(2) The manufacturing classes, dependent as they were on the South for 
the great bulk of the cotton supply, argued that the policy of free trade upon 
which Great Britain had entered would be best subserved by the triumph of 
the South. The Morrill tariff act of 1861, though designed for revenue rather 
than for protection, further convinced them of a purpose on the part of the 
Federal government to restrict British importations into the United States. 
Furthermore, the North possessed a merchant marine second only to that of 
Great Britain. The continuance of the war therefore met with the approval of 
the commercial classes, so long as it had the effect of driving American com- 
merce from the seas and placing it under the control of England. English 
capital was consequently almost a unit against the Union cause. 

(3) The real nature and purpose of the struggle was not appreciated. 


To accomplish the latter object the South possessed, as 
it believed, an effective economic weapon : namely, the cot- 
ton monopoly which, together with the promise of free 
trade, would enable it to secure Great Britain's interfer- 
ence in its behalf. The Confederacy, therefore, immedi- 
ately endeavored to make etfective use of this weapon, by 
prohibiting the exportation, and indeed ordering the de- 
struction of, cotton in order that it might bring pressure 
upon the industrial classes and through them upon the 
governments of Europe. Moreover, while attempting to 
secure foreign intervention, the Confederacy endeavored 
also, in violation of the neutrality laws of foreign countries 
to purchase fully equipped iron-clad ships abroad for the 

Some people regarded the war as a contest for State rights, and therefore 
justified by the Revolution, Others believed the Southern people would be able 
to establish their independence. The federal form of government was re- 
garded as ill-adapted to such a strain, and the national resources of the North- 
ern States were unappreciated until after 1863. There was therefore a wide- 
spread belief which at times became almost universal, that the federal union 
was doomed to failure. Liberals looked upon the war as a struggle for the 
perpetuation of slavery, basing their arguments on the declaration of the Fed- 
eral government at the beginning of the war, as announced by President Lin- 
coln, Secretary Seward, and Congress, that the contest was a struggle for the 
the preservation of the Union and not for the abolition of, or interference 
with, slavery in the Southern States. While indeed there were some influential 
leaders like John Bright who anticipated emancipation as an inevitable conse- 
quence of the war, this was the exceptional belief rather than the prevailing 

(4) There were also certain undercurrents of opinion which were set in 
motion against the North. Among them may be mentioned the feeling that 
the Federal government had been lacking in due respect for other Nations as 
was illustrated by the invasion of Mexico and by the Ostend Manifesto, although 
the fact remained that this criticism was levelled at pro-slavery administra- 
tions. Then again, large numbers of our people had participated in the 
English-Irish controversy, often with an official, or semi-official sanction. The 
American spirit, moreover, was held to be presumptuous and boastful and this 
did not sit well on English nerves. Mention, too, should be made of leading 
journals, particularly The Times, which had a potent influence against the 
Union. And in the field of literature, Carlyle, Grote, and Dickens, took up the 
pen in defense of the Confederacy. 

These various influences were rapidly set in motion, culminating at the time 


destruction of Northern commerce. Inasmuch as Great 
Britain was the great cotton importing and manufacturing 
Nation of the world and the course of other Nations would 
be largely determined by Great Britain's official attitude, 
attention should be given primarily to the attitude of Eng- 
land toward the two belligerents. Great Britain's relation 
to the cotton kingdom will be first considered. 

of the Trent affair in a great explosion of feeling and the beginning of war- 
like preparations against the United States. John Stuart Mill wrote : ' ' I con- 
templated the rush of nearly the whole upper and middle classes of my own 
country, even those who passed for Liberals, into a furious pro-Southern 
partisanship; the working classes, and some of the literary and scientific men, 
being almost the sole exceptions to the general frenzy. ' ' Mr. Mill explained 
that there was such profound ignorance of the antecedents of the struggle that 
it was not generally believed in England, for the first year or two of the war, 
that the quarrel was one concerning slavery. * * There were men of high prin- 
ciple and unquestionable liberality of opinion who thought it a dispute about 
tariffs, or assimilated it to the cases in which they were accustomed to sympa- 
thize, of a people struggling for independence. It was my obvious duty," 
said Mill, "to be one of the small minority who protested against this per- 
verted state of public opinion". — Mill's Autobiography, pp. 268, 269. 

The influences working in favor of the North were at first negligible. The 
laboring classes and a considerable portion of the middle class were friends of 
the Union, but they were without any appreciable influence in the government. 
Represented in Parliament by John Bright, Eiehard Cobden, and William E. 
Forster, and in the field of literature by John Stuart Mill, Thomas Hughes, 
Goldwin Smith, and Tennyson, their voices at last came to be heard. Con- 
fused at first as to the real issue of the conflict, they soon came to look upon it 
as a struggle of democracy and free labor as opposed to class privileges. In 
the meantime economic forces, Northern wheat and Southern cotton, struggled 
for the mastery in the field of politics and diplomacy. 

This analysis of English opinion on the American Civil War is based on the 
following accounts: Rhodes 's History of the United States, 18S0-1877, Vol. 
Ill, pp. 503-520; Pierce's Memoir and Letters of Charles Sumner, Vol. IV, 
pp. 151-159; Goldwin Smith's England and America in the Atlantic Monthly, 
Vol. 14, pp. 749-769; Goldwin Smith's England and the War of Secession in 
the Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 89, pp. 303-311. The Economist (London) and 
The Times (London) have also been freely used to determine the English 
temper toward the Union and the Confederacy. See especially The Economist, 
Vol. XIX, No. 944, September 28, 1861, pp. 1065-1067, for an editorial on 
''English Feeling toward America", and Vol. XXI, No. 1053, October 31, 
1863, pp. 1209-1210, for an editorial on ''English Opinion as Distinguished 
from English Action on American Questions". While The Times was ex- 



The rapid growth of cotton manufacturing in Great 
Britain is one of the most remarkable chapters in the his- 
tory of industry.^ Introduced into England in the early 
part of the seventeenth century, this industry was still in 
its infancy when the American colonies established their 
independence. The industrial revolution marks the sudden 
rise of cotton to first place in the manufacturing of textiles, 
thus superseding wool which had ruled British industry 
since the Middle Ages. Cotton production was stimulated 
throughout the world, particularly in the United States, 
and British imports rose rapidly from an annual average 
of nearly 7,000,000 pounds for the years from 1776 to 1785 
to 56,000,000 in 1800, and 152,000,000 pounds in 1820. By 
1841 cotton imports had increased to 488,000,000 pounds 
and in 1861 the high figure of 1,391,000,000 was reached."^ 
The cotton manufacture of Great Britain quickly rose to 
such importance that by 1846 the British government, by 
its formal adoption of the policy of free trade, recognized 
the cotton industry as the principal business of the country. 
J. E. McCulloch wrote in 1850 that the industry offered 
^^an advantageous field for the accumulation and employ- 
ment of millions upon millions of capital, and of thousands 

tremely hostile to the Union, The Economist took a more judicial attitude, 
though it freely predicted the ultimate establishment of the Confederacy. It 
became the policy of the journal to counsel peaceful mediation in order that 
the war might be speedily brought to a close, but it vigorously opposed forcible 
intervention which would mean war with the North. For a statement of the 
attitude of other journals see footnotes in Rhodes 's History of the United 
States, 1850-1877, Vol. Ill, pp. 503-520. 

6 For a brief sketch of the cotton manufacture of Great Britain, see En- 
cyclopedia Britannica (Eleventh Edition), Vol. VII, pp. 281-291. For a 
longer account of the earlier history of this industry see Baines's History of 
the Cotton Manufacture in Great Britain; McCulloch 's Commercial Dictionary 
(New Edition, 1850), pp. 450-466. 

7 McCulloch 's Commercial Dictionary (New Edition, 1850), p. 453; Buxton's 
Finance and Politics, Vol. I, pp. 275-277. 


upon thousands of workmen! The skill and genius by 
which these astonishing results have been achieved, have 
been one of the main sources of our power : they have con- 
tributed in no common degree to raise the British nation 
to the high and conspicuous place she now occupies. 
This able authority estimated that 542,000 people were di- 
rectly employed in the different departments of the manu- 
facture of cotton. If to these are added the workers 
engaged in the construction and repair of machinery and 
buildings required to carry it on, the cotton industry fur- 
nished subsistence for 1,000,000 to 1,200,000 persons, not 
counting old and infirm persons and children who were de- 
pendent on those directly employed.^ 

The following decade witnessed the most marvelous 
growth of the cotton industry. The extension of the cotton 
plantations of the South, improvements in transportation 
and shipping, the accumulation of capital, the concentration 
of population in the great industrial centers of England, 
and the development of the market for cotton textiles : all 
combined to stimulate the manufacture of cotton textiles 
and to accentuate Great Britain's economic dependence on 
this industry. In 1860 Great Britain had 2650 cotton fac- 
tories containing over 30,000,000 spindles and 350,000 looms 
run by 300,000 horse power.^^ ^'The cotton manufacture'', 
according to The Economist, '^from the first manipulation 
of the raw material to the last finish bestowed upon it con- 
stitutes the employment and furnishes the sustenance of the 

sMcCulloeh's Commercial Dictionary (New Edition, 1850), p. 451. 

sMcCulloch's Commercial Dictionary (New Edition, 1850), pp. 457-458. 

10 Hammond's The Cotton Industry in the Publications of the American 
Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 1897, p. 252. Professor Leoni 
Levi in a paper read before the Statistical Society of London in 1864 stated 
that Great Britain had more than twice as many spindles as Prance, Russia, 
Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Belgium, and Spain, which collectively 
contained only 12,100,000 spindles. 


largest portion of the population of Lancashire, North 
Cheshire, and Lanarkshire, of a considerable number of 
Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire, and York- 
shire and of scattered industries in several other parts of 
England, Ireland and Scotland.'^ Using McCulloch's esti- 
mate of 1850 as a basis, this journal concluded that ^4f we 
take into account the subsidiary trades and occupations, 
coal mines, machine workers &c and add all the unemployed 
families of the workmen'^, it was safe to conclude that 
nearly 4,000,000 persons were dependent for their daily 
bread upon the cotton industry.^^ 

The bearing of these facts on the study of Anglo-Amer- 
ican relations during the Civil War can readily be under- 
stood when we come to consider the extent to which Great 
Britain drew her cotton supply from the United States. 
During the four-year period, 1857-1860, inclusive, the Brit- 
ish consumption of cotton amounted to 9,062,700 bales, of 
which 7,140,000 bales, or 78.8 per cent, came from the 
United States. During the year 1860, which was a nor- 
mal year, imports totaled 3,365,700 bales, of which 2,580,700 
bales, or 76.6 per cent, were imported from the United 
States. The remainder, or 785,000 bales, came from other 
countries: the East Indies furnishing 16 per cent, and 
Egypt, Brazil, and the West Indies supplying in the main 
the other 7 per cent. It will therefore be seen that Great 
Britain's supply was drawn almost entirely from America 
and that a vast population was dependent for a living on 
the cotton industry. These are the facts which explain 

11 Editorial on ''The Disruption of the Union as it would Aifect England" 
in The Economist (London), Vol. XIX, No. 908, January 19, 1861, pp. 57-59. 

12 The Economist (London), Vol. XIX, No. 908, January 19, 1861, pp. 
57, 58. 

1 3 Hammond's The Cotton Industry in the Publications of the American 
Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 1897, p. 261. 


why the South attached so much importance to the cotton 
monopoly.^* It was firmly believed that Great Britain was 
so wholly dependent on American cotton that in the event 
of a war between the North and the South, England would 
interfere in behalf of the latter to keep open her source of 
supply; and that intervention would in turn precipitate a 
conflict between Great Britain and the United States which 
would insure the triumph of the Confederacy. 

The establishment of an effective blockade of the South- 
ern ports by the Union navy suddenly threatened the Eng- 
lish manufacturers with a cotton famine.^^ Importations 

14 For an excellent statement of the absolute reliance which the South placed 
on the cotton monopoly, see the historic speech of Senator James H. Hammond 
of South Carolina on March 4, 1858, quoted at length in Scherer's Cotton as a 
World Power, pp. 235-242. See also Wilson 's Bise and Fall of the Slave Power 
in America, Vol. II, pp. 548-550, for excerpts from this speech. Hammond 
declared that no Nation dared to make war on cotton. ''Without firing a 
gun, without drawing a sword," he said, ''should they make war on us we 
could bring the whole world to our feet. . . . what would happen if no 
cotton were furnished for three years'? .... England would topple head- 
long and carry the whole civilized world with her, save the South. No, you 
do not dare to make war on cotton. No power on earth dares to make war 
upon it. Cotton is King". To Francis Lieber, Senator Hammond wrote on 
April 19, 1860: "I firmly believe that the slave-holding power of the South is 
now the controlling power of the world — that no other power would face us 
in hostility. Cotton, rice, tobacco, and naval stores command the world; and 
we have sense to know it, and are sufficiently Teutonic to carry it out success- 
fully. The North without us would be a motherless calf, bleating about and 
die of mange and starvation. ' ' — Quoted by Ehodes in his History of the 
United States, 1860-1877, Vol. II, p. 440, from Life and Letters of Francis 
Lieher, p. 310. 

"Had it not been for the reliance which the architects of the Great Eebel- 
lion placed on cotton as a means of obtaining revenue, it is doubtful if the 
war would have been undertaken. ' ' — Hammond 's The Cotton Industry in the 
Publications of the American Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 
1897, p. 257. 

15 For a consideration of the effects of the cotton famine see Arnold's His- 
tory of the Cotton Famine; Adams's Charles Francis Adams, Ch. XIV; Pal- 
grave's Dictionary of Political Economy, Vol. I, pp. 439-441; Scherer's 
Cotton as a World Power, Ch. 56; Buxton's Finance and Politics, Vol. I, pp. 

VOL. XVI — 27 


from America declined from 2,580,700 bales in 1860 to 
1,841,600 bales in 1861, and to only 72,000 bales in 1862,i« 
in which year the cotton famine reached its height, though 
it continued well into the year 1863. The average Liverpool 
price for middling uplands cotton increased from 5.97 pence 
per pound in 1860 to 18.37 pence in 1862, and finally reached 
27.17 pence in 1864.^^ Mills were stopped, cotton opera- 
tives were thrown out of employment, and 500,000 people 
were dependent upon public charity.^^ Relief contributions 
poured in from India, Canada, Australia, and also from 
New York City ; while the sum of $12,000,000 was distrib- 
uted among the distressed.^^ 

It was in the midst of the cotton famine that there ap- 
peared to be real danger of intervention. The hope that 
the war would be of short duration was dispelled, and the 
manufacturing and commercial classes clamored for recog- 
nition of the Confederacy in order that the struggle might 
speedily be brought to a close. Lord Palmerston (Prime 
Minister) and Earl Eussell (Minister of Foreign Aifairs) 
seriously considered recognition. Parliament took up the 
cotton situation and debated the feasibility of recognizing 
the independence of the Confederacy.^'^ Eecognition im- 

16 Hammond's The Cotton Industry in the Publications of the American 
Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 1897, p. 261. 

i'7 Hammond's The Cotton Industry in the Publications of the American 
Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 1897, Appendix I, devoted to 
"Statistics of the Cotton Production and Trade of the United States from 
1784 to 1897." 

18 ''A relief fund was established and the number of persons relieved, which 
in June 1862 was 129,774, in December, 1862 was 485,434. The number con- 
tinued nearly as high till April, 1863, when it was 362,076." — Levi's History 
of British Commerce (Second Edition, 1880), p. 446, note 5. 

^ J' Adams's Charles Francis Adams, pp. 276, 277. 

20 The parliamentary debates on the recognition of the independence of the 
Confederacy are reported in Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, 
Vol. 168, .July 18, 1862, pp. 511-578 (House of Commons) ; Vol. 169, March 


plied intervention and the breaking of the blockade, which 
would release American cotton for shipment to England,^^ 
and thus relieve the distressed mill owners and operatives 
and bring about a general mercantile trade revival. 

Lord Campbell argued in the House of Commons that 
recognition would be of interest to the cotton manufac- 
turers. He stated that it had been reported to him by cred- 
\ ible authorities that the Southern planters had during the 
previous year begun to grow cotton in anticipation of rec- 
I ognition and that they had plowed it under when their 
! hopes expired. He contended, therefore, that the first and 
most important reason for acknowledging the independence 
of the Confederacy was the Lancashire distress, which 
would experience no relief until cotton rose in abundance 
and fell in price ; and that result, he said, could hardly be 
expected to occur until the end of the war. In reply to the 
argument that the deficiency should be supplied by encour- 
aging the production of India cotton. Lord Campbell de- 
clared that ^^no man, conversant with political economy, 

23, 1863, pp. 1714-1741 (House of Lords) ; Vol. 171, June 30, 1863, pp. 1771- 
1841 (House of Commons) ; Vol. 172, July 13, 1863, pp. 661-673 (House of 
Commons). The Iowa State Law Library (located in the State Capitol in Des 
Moines) is one of a very few libraries in this country which is fortunate 
enough to possess a complete set of these debates. The writer is indebted to 
Mr. A. J. Small, Law Librarian, for courtesies which have facilitated the 
preparation of this paper. 

21 There were no reliable crop statistics for the South during the war, but 
the estimates of the period show that a considerable amount of cotton had 
accumulated during the years 1861 and 1862. The British consul at Charleston 
estimated in August, 1862, that there were 2,500,000 bales of cotton then on 
hand in the South, and that the crop of 1862 would probably total 1,500,000 
bales. Of this amount but 50,000 bales successfully ran the blockade, thus 
leaving, according to this estimate, 3,950,000 bales available for distribution. 
— The Economist (London), Vol. XX, No. 1001, November 1, 1862, p. 1207. 
The Commercial and Financial Chronicle placed the estimates of cotton pro- 
duction during the war much higher. See Hammond's The Cotton Industry in 
the Publications of the American Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 
1897, p. 259. 


supposes that cotton crops will start into existence in other 
portions of the world while an avalanche of 4,000,000 bales 
impends upon the market from America. 

The Marquess of Clanricarde attacked the legitimacy of 
the Federal blockade of the Southern ports,^^ basing his 
argument on the Declaration of Paris,^^ which declared that 
blockades to be legal must be eifective. He read a letter 
from a merchant of Manchester stating that the American 
blockade had been run by four ships, which in less than 
four months had made seventeen successful journeys carry- 
ing in 120,000 pounds sterling worth of British goods and 
taking out 200,000 pounds sterling worth of cotton. One 
steamer alone, it was reported, had run through the 
Charleston blockade with a cargo of 1750 bales of cotton 
and 500 barrels of rosin.^^ Mr. Eussell dismissed this argu- 
ment by reminding the Marquess that the United States 
had not ratified the Declaration of Paris, and that under 

22 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 169, March 23, 1863, 
pp. 1716, 1728. 

23 For a report of the debate in the House of Commons on the blockade of 
the Southern ports, see Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 
165, March 7, 1862, pp. 1158-1230, 1233-1243. 

24 The Declaration of Paris was signed on April 16, 1856, by all the powers 
represented at the Congress: England, France, Austria, Russia, Sardinia, 
Turkey, and Prussia. It provided that: (a) privateering is and remains 
abolished; (b) the neutral flag covers enemy's goods, with the exception of 
contraband of war; (c) neutral goods, with the exception of contraband of 
war, are not liable to capture under an enemy's flag; and (d) blockades, in 
order to be binding must be effective; that is to say, maintained by forces 
sufiicient really to prevent access to the coast of the enemy. The countries 
not represented at the Congress were invited to sign, and most of them did so 
before the end of the year; but the United States held out, basing her objec- 
tion upon the idea that, inasmuch as we did not possess a large navy, the 
right to fit out privateers should be retained until the capture of private 
enemy property at sea was abolished. See Hershey's Essentials of Interna- 
tional Public Lav), pp. 73, 74, note 49; and Moore's International Law Digest, 
pp. 561-583. 

2!' Hansard 's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 15, 1863, 
pp. 874-880. 


\ similar circumstances England had blockaded ^Hhe whole 

! coast of France, from Brest to Dunkirk ; and when we were 
at war with America, we proclaimed a blockade of not less 
than 2000 miles of coast ; and if we ourselves held legitimate 
a blockade of 2000 miles of coast, we should still . . . . 
if we were at war with the United States hold that such a 
blockade was a legitimate one." Mr. Russell urged further 

! that before taking any action it would be better to await 

I developments in America.^'^ 

I The Parliamentary debate on the question of interfer- 
ence in the American struggle entered its final stage on 
June 30, 1863, when Mr. Roebuck introduced his resolution 
calling for the recognition of the independence of the Con- 
federacy. In defense of this resolution, Mr. Roebuck 
i argued: first, that a large portion of the population were 
I ''suffering in consequence of the cotton famine;" second, 
that the time had come for the recognition of the Confed- 
eracy because it had ''vindicated the right to be recog- 
nized"; and third, that the Southern people were by the 
1 continuance of the war being driven to become a manufac- 
I turing nation, producing their own woollen, cotton, and iron 
I manufactures, which would foster a protective system and 
thus destroy the market for British goods. On the other 
hand, intervention would be reciprocated by free trade and 
the British market would be retained. "The cry about 
slavery", he continued, "is hypocrisy and cant. We shall 
do no harm to the black man if we adopt my Resolution. "^"^ 
But recognition of the Confederacy was complicated by 
other questions. Russell defined the position of the govern- 
ment on the American question by explaining that England 

26 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 15, 1863, 
pp. 883, 884. 

27 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 30, 1863, 
pp. 1776, 1780. 


had never taken part in interventions, except ' ^ in behalf of 
the independence, freedom, and welfare of the great portion 
of mankind"; that no interests deeply as they might atfect 
England would induce the government to interfere, except 
*4n the cause of liberty and to promote the freedom of 
mankind' that England as the champion of free institu- 
tions could not afford to take any step which would involve 
the recognition and perpetuation of the institution of 
slavery; and that so far as he was concerned he hoped 
*^with regard to this Civil War in America" that the gov- 
ernment might be able to continue an * impartial and neu- 
tral course ".^^ 

Again, recognition of the Confederacy would constitute 
a plain violation of international law. This view of the 
question was well stated as follows by The Economist on 
July 4th, when the Eoebuck Resolution was before the 
House of Commons : 

Two conditions, and two only, are necessary for a just recogni- 
tion: — first, that the future existence — not only the present 
monetary life, but the indefinite future continuance of the new 
State — should be really and truly certain ; next, that the recognis- 
ing State has no sinister by-thought that warps its judgment. A 
recognition from partiality to the insurgents — a premature recog- 
nition while the existence of the seceding State is as yet insecure 
and unreliable — is a good casus belli to the residuary State against 
the recognising State. 

The Economist went on to show that neither of the two 
conditions was applicable to the American question,^^ and 

28 Hansard's Parliamentary Delates, Third Series, Vol. 169, March 23, 1863, 
pp. 1740, 1741. 

20 Editorial on ' ' The Common Sense of International Law ' ' with special 
reference to the question of ' 'Eecognition", — The Economist (London), Vol. 
XXI, No. 1036, July 4, 1863, p. 732. 

30 ''Now, if such be the law regulating recognition, the application of it to 
the case of the Confederate States is very clear. You have only to hear the 


that recognition would therefore constitute a just cause of 
war on the part of the North against England. The writer 
further expressed his views as follows : 

As neutrals, we cannot recognise the Confederacy while it only 
may be independent, while its independence is only one event in a 
host of probabilities, while it is only in Paley's celebrated phrase, 
'^one guess among many": if we do so, we help it to become inde- 
pendent; we make that particular solution of events more likely 
than it was before. As neutrals, we can only recognize a new State 
when it must be independent, for then we can neither aid the 
acquisition of that independence or prevent it. 

Even if England did recognize the independence of the 
Confederacy it was ^^very dubious whether the effect of 
recognition would not be to prolong the war which it is 
sought to terminate. The most natural termination would 
be caused by the decline of the warlike spirit in the North, 
and the intervention of England would more than anything 
else excite and fan this spirit just when all other events 
and the evident diminution in the probability of success 
ought to weaken it.'' 

^'Mere recognition", continued the writer, would, there- 
fore, when the subject is examined, be a breach of inter- 
national law, without even the base merit of a correspond- 
ing advantage. It would not relieve our manufacturing 
districts. If we chose to intervene by war, to break the 
blockade, to create the 'South' as we created Belgium and 
as we created Greece, we should at least gain much. But 

pleadings of the advocates for it, of Mr. Eoebuck or Mr, Spence. They say 
recognition will put an end to the civil war, and the cessation of the war is a 
plain good to England, This is only saying in other words 'we will aid the 
insurgent States against their old Government: the two parties being at pres- 
ent fighting with some approach to equality, we will interfere so as to destroy 
that equality: the present undecidedness of the struggle is to be our reason 
for stepping in to decide it, and there cannot be, according to the principles 
laid down, a worse reason: it is the exact reason why we should not step in." 
— The Economist (London), Vol. XXI, No. 1036, July 4, 1863, p. 732. 


the objections to this course are so many and so obvious 
that no one even proposes it."^^ 

But the recognition of the Confederacy was urged to be 
impracticable, not only because it would in all probability 
precipitate a conflict with the North, but also because there 
were more feasible methods for temporarily relieving the 
cotton situation until the American supply should become 
available. As early as January, 1861, The Economist 
called attention to the disastrous effects which civil war in 
America would have on the cotton manufacture and trade 
of Great Britain, but predicted that these effects would be 
reduced by degrees in various ways. In the first place, a 
great stimulus would be given to the already awakened 
activity of British merchants in procuring supplies of raw 
material from regions that were only then just beginning 
to be thought of, but from whence under sufficient pressure 
considerable quantities might within a reasonably short 
time be procured. India, Egypt, Brazil, Australia, the 
West Coast of Africa, and Asia Minor would be able to 
supply a considerable portion of the deficiency caused by 
the cutting off of American cotton. In ordinary times 
India alone supplied a considerable amount, as was shown 
by the cotton receipts of 1857, when this region sent 680,000 
bales to England, other districts sending 255,000 bales. 
Under extraordinary pressure and inducements, India, 
Egypt, Brazil, and other regions would be able to supply a 
third more than in 1857, or about 1,200,000 bales, which 
would be equal to one-half of the total consumption (after 
deducting exports) in 1860. 

In the second place, a considerable economy would at 
once be effected under the influence of the high rate of 
prices by a general tendency of manufacturers toward the 

31 The Economist (London), Vol. XXI, No. 1036, July 4, 1863, p. 732. 



production of the finer fabrics. This possibility was dis- 
cussed as follows : 

Manufacturers who now use weekly 100 bales, could easily by 
turning to finer fabrics reduce their consumption to 70 or 75 bales. 
. . . . ''Domestics" as they are called, or strong cotton cloths 
and shirtings, and coarse yarns would be discouraged ; and, as their 
price approached more nearly to that of linen and woollen fabrics, 
would be to a considerable extent superseded by them. This would 
cause an increase in the production of these latter articles, and a 
consequent increased demand for work-people ; and by this process 
a considerable number of the hands thrown out of work in the 
cotton trade would be absorbed and the suffering to the operatives, 
though not the loss to the masters, would be greatly mitigated.^2 

These two measures for industrial relief received serious 
consideration as the cotton famine became more acute and 
the hope for an early termination of the war was aban- 
doned. It was urged at considerable length that special 
encouragement should be given to the production of India 
cotton:^^ But India cotton, known by its trade name as 
^^Surat", was of an inferior quality as compared with the 
American product, while the cost of production, including 
transportation from the interior, was considerably higher.'*^* 

S2 The Economist (London), Vol. XIX, No. 908, January 19, 1861, pp. 57- 

33 For an extended inquiry into the problem of increasing the supply of 
India cotton, see Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 167, 
June 19, 1862, pp. 754-793; Vol. 168, August 1, 1862, pp. 1063-1077; Vol. 172, 
July 3, 1863, pp. 178-237. See also The Economist (London), Vol. XX, No. 
961, January 25, 1862, pp. 85, 86, for an excellent article on * ' India versus 
American cotton: the real State of the Case". 

34 ' ' The fibre of the Orleans cotton is much longer, more even, and more 
silky than that of Surat. It is usually also much cleaner. So much of the 
Surat cotton falls down as dirt, or flies off as duct and flock, in the process of 
working it into yarn, that a pound of it malces much less yarn or cloth, than a 
pound of Orleans. Being shorter in fibre, also, it requires more twisting to 
give it the required strength, and therefore cannot be made into yarn so fast. 
From these two causes, its value to the manipulator is never more than two- 
thirds that of an equal weight of its American rival, — and never can he more 


It could not, therefore, compete with the southern staple. 
While India might be encouraged to supply the deficiency 
caused by the Southern blockade, English capitalists natur- 
ally hesitated to make heavy investments in India cotton 
fields; and manufacturers were reluctant to institute ex- 
pensive changes in machinery for the utilization of the east- 
ern staple. They realized the fact that upon the termina- 
tion of the war American cotton would in all probability 
regain its former position of supremacy in the British 
markets, and thus great financial losses would be incurred 
by investors in the India product.^^ 

The growing industrial distress, nevertheless, served as a 
stimulus for the gradual establishment of new and extend- 
ed sources of supply. India in particular began to respond 
to England's imperative needs and to the correspondingly 
higher prices for cotton. Table I shows that w^hile cotton 
imports from America declined, the imports from other 
countries rose rapidly from 785,000 bales to 1,445,000 bales 

whatever improvements and adaptations of machinery may be introduced, so 
long as its quality and character remain unaltered, — for not only is its quality 
inferior, but its character is peculiar. — The plain simple, conclusive truth is 
that the American cotton has more in it than the Indian". — The Economist 
(London), Vol. XX, No. 961, January 25, 1862, pp. 85, 86. 

35 "[Let us, therefore, look to India for all the cotton it can spare us; let us 
urge the natives to improve the quality and condition of their product, — for 
that is always worth their while; let us press forward as much as possible the 
improvement of their rivers and their roads, — for these things will tell upon 
all articles as well as on cotton; let us purchase, at whatever price we can 
afford to pay, this indispensable material from Egypt, from Brazil, from 
Australia, from Jamaica, and from the Gold Coast; — but do not let us waste 
means in fostering or forcing artificial industries, and do not let us delude 
ourselves into the belief that as long as America sends us cotton at all it will 
not supply us cheaper and better than any other country, — for it ivoutd not he 
true." — The Economist (London), Vol. XX, No. 96, January 25, 1862, p. 86. 



British Cotton Imports from the United States and 
Other Countries^^ 


From United States 

From Other Countries 



in 1862 and 1,932,000 bales in 1863, finally reaching the high 
figure of 2,587,000 bales in 1864, which equalled the imports 
from the United States, or four-fifths of the total imports 
from all countries, in 1860. In the meantime, the industrial 
situation was further relieved by extension of the linen and 
woollen industries.^"^ Thus, while industrial distress still 

36 Hammond 's The Cotton Industry in the Piiblications of the American 
Economic Association (New Series), Part I, 1897, p. 261. 

'^Mr. Henry Ash worth, speaking at the annual meeting of the Manchester 
Chamber of Commerce, 30th January 1865, said : ^ The quantity of cotton 
consumed in 1860 was valued at £34,000,000. Last year (1864) for a quantity 
probably not exceeding one-half what we received in 1860, we had to pay, in 
round number, £80,000,000. In 1860 our consumption was one billion eighty- 
three million pounds. In 1864 it was five hundred and sixty-one million 
pounds, or about fifty-one per cent, of the former year. But the inferiority 
of the material required much more labour; hence the fifty-one per cent, of 
cotton consumed required from sixty to seventy per cent, of the hands to work 
it up. In 1860 American cotton furnished five days' labour out of six in 
every week; in 1864, it did not furnish enough for half a day per week. In 
1860 we paid for Indian cotton £3,500,000 and in 1864 nearly £40,000,000. 
The quantity had increased two and a half times (from two hundred and 
fourteen million pounds to five hundred and thirteen million pounds), and the 
price had increased ten or eleven times. ' ' ' — Quoted from Watts 's Facts of 
the Cotton Famine in Adams's Trans- Atlantic historical Solidarity, p. 123. 

37 This is shown by a comparison of exports of linen and woollen piece 
goods during the seven years preceding the cotton famine (1855-1861) with 
the seven years which include this period. Exports of linen goods increased 
from an annual average of 131,238,504 yards for the years 1855-1861, to 
210,304,491 yards for the years 1862-1868: an increase of 79,065,987 yards 


continued, business conditions improved materially, the 
number of people dependent upon public charity de- 
creased,^^ and the economic necessity for interference in 
the American struggle was felt to be less acute. At the 
same time, the destruction of American shipping gave Great 
Britain's merchants a monopoly of the trade which was 
rapidly developing in spite of the cutting off of the Con- 
federacy by the Union blockade. 

Finally, mention should be made of John Bright and 
Eichard Cobden, who continually kept before the people 
the fact that their economic well-being, as well as the cause 
of democracy, would be promoted by the triumph of the 
North. These two popular leaders addressed the masses 
in great gatherings on the cotton situation, and reminded 
them that the cotton supply of the South would be much 
better secured by free labor than by slave labor. Said Mr. 
Bright, in June, 1863 : 

I mamtain, that with a supply of cotton mainly derived from the 
Southern States, and mainly raised by slave labor, two things are 
indisputable: First, that the supply must always be insufficient; 
and Second, that it must always be insecure. — I maintain and I 
believe my opinion will be supported by all those men who are 
most conversant with American affairs — that with slavery abol- 
ished, with freedom firmly established in the South, you would find 
in ten years to come a rapid increase in the growth of cotton, and 
not only would its growth be rapid, but its permanent increase 
would be secured. — There is no greater enemy to Lancashire to its 

or 60.2 per cent. Exports of woollen goods during the same period increased 
from an annual average of 168,747,893 yards to 245,091,834 yards: an in- 
crease of 76,343,941 yards or 45.2 per cent. The impetus given to the linen 
industry is further shown by "the fact that whilst there were in 1858, only 
91,646 acres under flax in Ireland, the area increased in 1864 to 301,942 
acres." — Palgrave's Dictionary of Political Economy, Vol. I, pp. 440, 441. 

38 See above note 18. After April, 1863, the number of persons dependent 
upon public charity "fell monthly till 1865 when the excess disappeared." — 
Levi's History of Commerce (Second Edition, 1880), p. 446, note 5. 


capital and to its labor, than the man who wishes the cotton agri- 
culture of the Southern States, to be continued under slave labor.^^ 

It will therefore be seen that while cotton was the eco- 
nomic basis for England's ultra-partisan sympathy for the 
South, culminating in threatened recognition of the Con- 
federacy, the following factors contributed in varying de- 
grees to the decision of the government to remain neutral 
in the conflict. 

In the first place, recognition of the Confederacy involved 
the recognition and perpetuation of the institution of 
slavery, which would be inconsistent with the established 
policy of the English government not to interfere in the 
civil dissensions of foreign states except to promote the 
cause of liberty and freedom throughout the world. Again, 
recognition would constitute a plain violation of interna- 
tional law: first, because '^the indefinite future continu- 
ance" of the Confederacy was so uncertain as to make the 
recognizing power a participant in helping the new state to 
establish its independence ; second, because recognition, ac- 
companied ^^by a sinister by- thought which warps its judg- 
ment", would be premature and therefore a good casus 
belli on the part of the residuary state against the recog- 
nizing state ; and, third, because recognition would not even 
have the base merit of a corresponding advantage, namely, 
the relief of the manufacturing districts, inasmuch as it 
would involve the risk of war with the United States, with 
the result that the struggle which recognition sought to 
terminate would be prolonged rather than shortened. 

Moreover, it will be seen by consulting Table I that while 
American cotton imports declined, imports from other 
countries increased rapidly, until in 1862 they amounted to 

39Scherer's Cotton as a World Power, p. 282. See also Hansard's Parlia- 
mentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 30, 1863, p. 1830. 


two-fifths and in 1864 to four-fifths the total imports in 
1860. These importations, together with the extension of 
the woollen and linen industries, brought considerable relief 
to the industrial classes, thus lessening the economic neces- 
sity for interference in the American quarrel. It was even 
urged that with proper encouragement of the production 
of India cotton. Great Britain would become independent 
of the American supply, but this opinion was not enter- 
tained to any marked degree. American cotton was so su- 
perior to any other product that it was bound to regain its 
former place in the British market upon the conclusion of 
hostilities. But as long as the war continued India cotton 
supplied to an increasing extent the deficits caused by the 
cutting ofl of the American product. These facts were 
duly emphasized when recognition of the Confederacy was 
proposed as a remedy for the cotton famine. Finally, it 
was urged by Bright and others that with England so 
largely dependent on American cotton, the supply would 
under a system of slave labor always be insufficient, not to 
say insecure ; whereas, with slavery abolished and freedom 
established (which would be the inevitable consequence of 
the war if the combatants were left to themselves), the 
South would in a few years be able to increase its cotton 
production sufficiently to insure a permanent supply for the 
British mills. 


While these forces were all contributing to the main- 
tenance of neutrality, various agencies were employed by 
the North to prevent British recognition of the Confeder- 
acy. These agencies were : first, the diplomatic mission of 
Charles Francis Adams who, in cooperation with President 
Lincoln and Secretary Seward at home and with John 


Bright and William E. Forster in England, handled Amer- 
ican affairs so tactfully when there appeared to be real 
danger of intervention; second, the Emancipation Procla- 
mation, which cleared away British misconceptions con- 
cerning the real nature and purpose of the struggle and 
convinced all classes that democracy was the fundamental 
issue at stake ; third, the military victories of July 4, 1863, 
which gave evidence of the ability of the North, if left to 
itself, to preserve the Union; and fourth. Great Britain's 
dependence on Northern wheat, which was greatly accentu- 
ated during the period of the cotton famine and which 
therefore operated as a contributing influence in keeping 
the British government officially neutral while the war was 
in progress. With due recognition of the part played by 
the first three of these agencies in the maintenance of Great 
Britain's neutrality, the writer desires to direct special 
attention to a consideration of the fourth influence, which 
seems to have been consistently overlooked by all students 
of Anglo-American relations during this critical period. 
Attention, therefore, will now be given to Great Britain's 
relation to the cereal region of the Northwest. 

The United Kingdom had by 1860 become a great wheat 
importing country. The Industrial Revolution had trans- 
formed the Nation from an agricultural community export- 
ing grain and live stock into a manufacturing state, de- 
pendent to a considerable degree upon foreign Nations for 
an adequate food supply.^*^ Although agriculture had in- 
deed expanded and prospered after the close of the Napo- 
leonic V7ars, due to enclosures and the improvement in the 
technique of farming, it had not as a matter of fact con- 

*o Great Britain definitely became a wheat-importing country in 1793. — See 
Prothero's English Farming: Past and Present, p. 268. 


tinued to keep pace with the rapid industrial development 
of the country. Population increased more rapidly than 
did the supply of foodstuffs, and the British Isles were 
compelled to rely on foreign importations to meet the an- 
nually recurring deficits in the home supply which, hereto- 
fore negligible, had now begun to assume vast proportions. 
Particularly was this true in the case of wheat: the first 
article of prime necessity in the food consumption of the 
United Kingdom. In respect to this important food product 
British agriculture experienced a retrogressive movement, 
not only falling behind the real needs of the people, but 
actually supporting a fewer number of people in 1860 than 
in 1830. The repeal of the Corn Laws*^ in 1846, in response 
to a popular demand on the part of the industrial classes 
for more and cheaper food was immediately followed by a 
rapid increase in the importations of wheat and flour. Im- 
ports increased from an annual average of 900,000 quarters 
for the decade 1831-1841 to 2,948,000 quarters for the dec- 
ade 1841-1851, and finally reached the high figure of 
5,030,000 quarters for the decade ending with 1861.^2 The 

41 For a history of the English Corn Trade and the Corn Laws see especially 
Prothero's English Farming: Past and Present, Ch. XII and Appendix III; 
Levi's History of British Commerce (Second edition, 1880), Part III, Ch. 
VIII, and Part IV, Chs. I, IV, reprinted in Rand's Economic History Since 
1763 (Fourth edition, 1903), Ch. IX; Day's History of Commerce (New Edi- 
tion, 1916), Chs. XXXV, XXXVI; Ogg's Economic DevelopmeJit of Modern 
Europe, Ch. XII; Slater's Malcing of Modern England, pp. 136-148; 
McCulloch's Commercial Dictionary (New edition, 1850), pp. 411-450. See 
also Trevelyan's The Life of John Bright, Chs. IV, V, VI, on The Battle of 
the Corn Laws, containing an excellent account of the Corn Law repeal. 

42 The Journal of the Boyal Agricultural Society of England, Second Series, 
Vol. V, pp. 186, 187, 190, 196, 197. See also McCulloch's Commercial Diction- 
ary (New Edition, 1850), pp. 438, 439; and Prothero's English Farming: 
Past and Present, Appendix III, p. 441, which presents a tabulation of average 
prices of wheat in England and Wales from 1771 to 1911. A quarter is equiv- 
alent to eight bushels. 

The first agricultural census of the United Kingdom was taken in 1867. 
Reliance must therefore be placed on estimates before that date which, though 
calculated with considerable care, are nevertheless somewhat at variance. For 


average animal home production of wheat for the five-year 
period ending with 1859 was estimated at 16,000,000 quar- 
ters*^ which, together with the annual importations, sup- 
plied 21,000,000 quarters: the total amount available for 
home consumption. The United Kingdom had therefore by 
1860 come to depend on foreign countries for one-fourth of 
the total supply of wheat required for a population of 

The principal granaries of Great Britain were the United 
States, Eussia, Germany, and France. To what extent, 
then, was Great Britain dependent on the American wheat 
supply during the years 1860 to 1865, and what effect did 
this dependence have on the attitude of that country to- 
ward the North in the critical period of the war? In an- 
swering this question it will be necessary to inquire into 
the condition of the British and continental harvests ; how 
far the grain-raising States of the Northwest were able to 
respond to Great Britain's imperative needs; and to what 
extent this dependence on Northern wheat was recognized 
when intervention was seriously threatened. 

the statistics used in thi^ paper, which are for the United Kingdom as a whole, 
dependence has been placed chiefly on The Journal of the Boyal Agricultural 
Society of England as the most reliable source of information. The Economist 
(London) has also been found to be very useful, especially for weekly reports 
of the wheat trade. 

43 The Journal of the Eoyal Agricultural Society of England, Second Series, 
Vol. IV, p. 396. 

44 For an excellent survey of the world's wheat supply from 1852 to 1868 
(which includes the first agricultural census), see especially Lawes and Gil- 
bert's On the Home Produce, Imports, and Consumption of Wheat, printed in 
The Journal of the Royal Agricultural Society of England, Second Series, Vol. 
IV, pp. 359-396; Evershed's Variation in the Price and Supply of Wheat, 
printed in The Journal of the Boyal Agricultural Society of England, Second 
Series, Vol. V, pp. 153-262; and Caird's paper On the Agricultural Statistics 
of the United Kingdom, read before the Statistical Society in March, 1868, 
and printed in The Merchants Magazine and Commercial Review (edited by 
William B. Dana), Vol. 60, pp. 431-447. 

VOL. XVI — 28 


The United Kingdom in 1860, 1861, and 1862 had a suc- 
cession of crop faihires. The wheat harvest of 1860 re- 
turned only 13,000,000 quarters, or 3,000,000 quarters below 
the general average for the two preceding years. In 1861 
occurred one of the worst crop failures in the history of the 
country, when production, fell to 11,000,000 quarters, while 
in 1862 the harvest amounted to only 12,000,000 quarters.^''^ 
During this three-year period Great Britain was therefore 
confronted with a huge deficit in her wheat supply. To pro- 
vide the usual amount of food for the Nation required the 
importation of a quantity of wheat equal to nearly one-half 
of the supply needed.'^^ Great Britain's dependence on 
foreign wheat was therefore accentuated to a degree hither- 
to unknown. The wheat exporting countries of continental 
Europe, however, failed Great Britain in the hour of need. 
Imports from Russia and Prussia remained steady, but 
these two countries were unable to respond to Great Brit- 
ain's greatly increased demands.^^ Imports from France 
suffered a sharp falling off, owing to crop failures in 1861 
and 1862.^^ Nor were Egypt and the South American 
countries able to furnish sufficient wheat to meet the short- 

45 See The Journal of the Eoyal Agricultural Society of Ejigland, Second 
Series, Vol. IV, pp. 392-396, for tables giving estimated amounts of home 
production, imports, and consumption of wheat for England and Wales, Scot- 
land, Great Britain, Ireland, and the United Kingdom respectively. See espe- 
cially Table V for the United Kingdom which summarizes preceding tables. 

40 Whereas in 1854-1855 and 1855-1856 the imports supplied but 17 per 
cent of the estimated average annual requirements of wheat for the United 
Kingdom, in 1860-1861 they supplied 53 per cent; in 1861-1862 they fur- 
nished 47 per cent; and in 1862-1863 they amounted to 45 per cent of the 
total annual requirements. These figures are for. the harvest years from 
September 1 to August 31, See The Journal of the Boyal Agricultural So- 
ciety of England, Second Series, Vol. IV, p. 385. 

47 The Journal of the Boyal Agricultural Society of England, Second Series, 
Vol. V, pp. 163-165, 187, 188, 196, 197, 198-218. 

4s The Journal of the Eoyal Agricultural Society of England, Second Series, 
Vol. V, pp. 159-163, 196, 197, 225, 226. 


age.*^ It was the United States alone that was able to sup- 
ply the deficiency. 

The United States had already by 1860 become a great 
wheat-producing nation, with the prospect of becoming the 
successful competitor in the world's markets. The devel- 
opment of water transportation and the extension of rail- 
roads into the Middle West opened up this region as the 
great wheat emporium of the world.'^^ The production of 
wheat increased from 100,000,000 bushels in 1849 to 173,- 
000,000 bushels in 1859 — an increase of seventy-three per 
cent in the decade preceding the threatened disruption of 
the Union.^^ Of this amount, the free States and Terri- 
tories contributed 142,000,000 bushels, or eighty-two per 
cent, while the seceding States contributed only 31,000,000 
bushels, or eighteen per cent, as their share of the wheat 
harvest in 1859.^- By far the greater proportion of the 
wheat crop was marketed at home, the rising industrial cen- 
ters consuming increasing quantities from year to year, 
and the southern States purchasing on an average about 
10,000,000 bushels annually from the North in the decade 
ending with 1860.^^ 

The Civil War cut off the southern market and thus left 

49 The Journal of the Boyal Agricultural Society of England, Second Series, 
Vol. V, pp. 165-176, 196, 197, 218-225, 226-238, 240-244. 

50 Eighth Census of the United States, volume on Agriculture (published in 
1864), pp. xxix-xlv. This is a valuable source of information on wheat pro- 
duction in the United States by States and geographic divisions for the decen- 
nial years, 1850 and 1860. See especially pp. xli-xliv on ''Wheat Growing in 
the West". See also pp. cxxxv, cxxxvi. 

51 Eighth Census of the United States, volume on Agriculture (published in 
1864), pp. xxix-xxxi. 

52 Calculated from the returns of the Eighth Census of the United States, 
volume on Agriculture (1864), pp. xxix-xxxi. See also Compendium of the 
Ninth Census, p. 695; and Beport of the Commissioner of Agriculture, 1862, p. 

53 See Beport of the New YorJc Produce Exchange, 1875-1876, p. 324. 


the Nortli with a rapidly accumulating surplus, which now 
became available for shipment to England. Moreover, the 
high prices of wheat in the fifties, due in large measure to 
the Crimean War and the consequent interruption of the 
wheat supply from southern Eussia, continued to rule 
throughout the war period,^* with the result that the in- 
creased production of wheat was greatly stimulated. The 
enlistment of hundreds of thousands of men in the army, 
not to mention the great overland migration to the western 
gold fields during these years, threatened the grain-raising 
States with a serious shortage of farm labor. This defi- 
ciency, however, was more than counterbalanced by the 
popularization of improved farm machinery, the work of 
women and children in the fields, and immigration from 
foreign countries and from the eastern and the border 

Agriculture, as a matter of fact, expanded and prospered 

54 The annual average export prices of American wheat during the eleven- 
year period 1855 to 1865, inclusive, were as follows: 

Year Price Year Price 

1855 $1.66 1861 $1.23 

1856 1.85 1862 1.14 

1857 1.53 ' 1863 1.29 

1858 1.02 1864 1.33 

1859 .95 1865 1.95 

1860 .98 

See Annual Eeport on tlie Foreign Commerce and Navigation of the United 
States (Treasury Department), 1890, p. xxii; Annual Eeport of the Commis- 
sioner of Agriculture, 1868, p. 48. For annual average prices of British wheat 
imports during the same period, see Prothero's English Farming: Past and 
Present, p. 441. See also Table II, accompanying this paper, in which there 
is listed the average price of wheat per quarter for the years 1858 to 1865, 

•'"'S See Fite's Agricultural Development of the West during the Civil War in 
The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol. XX, pp. 259-278. This article is 
reprinted in substantially the same form as Chapter I in the same author's 
Industrial and Social Conditions in the North during the Civil War, and con- 
tains an excellent survey of the agricultural development of the West during 
the war period. 


during the war period. The forces which had already be- 
gun to revolutionize agriculture, transforming it from a 
primitive, pioneer, self-sufficing industry into a highly com- 
plex business, organized on a capitalistic commercial basis, 
were all brought into play by the exigencies of the war.^^ 
In no line of agricultural production was this expansion 
more self-evident than in the wheat-growing industry. 
The loyal States and Territories increased the total pro- 
duction of wheat from 142,000,000 bushels in 1859 to 187,- 
000,000 in 1862; while in 1863, the banner year of the war 
period, the harvests returned 191,000,000 bushels.^"^ This 
increased production of wheat immediately reflected itself 
in the export trade, which suddenly mounted from 17,000,- 
000 bushels in 1860 to 53,000,000 bushels in 1861, reached 
62,000,000 bushels in 1862, and still remained at the high 
figure of 58,000,000 bushels in 1863.^^ Almost the entire 
shipment of wheat and flour went to England. 

British importations rose rapidly (see Table II), increas- 
ing from an annual average of 5,000,000 quarters to 
7,334,000 quarters in 1860, to 8,618,000 quarters in 1861, 
and finally to 11,548,000 quarters in 1862. Whereas the 
United States supplied only 11.2 per cent of Great Brit- 
ain's wheat imports in the two years 1858 and 1859, in 
1860 this country supplied 29.2 per cent; in 1861, 41.5 
per cent; in 1862, 43.5 per cent; and in 1863 the United 

56 The agricultural revolution in the United States dates from the Civil War 
to the close of the century. The forces contributing to this revolution were: 
(a) a liberal land policy: free homesteads after 1862; (b) improved labor 
saving machinery; (c) extension of transportation facilities; (d) foreign im- 
migration; (e) development of domestic and foreign markets; and (f) agri- 
cultural societies and fairs; farmers' organizations; and agricultural journals, 
colleges, and experiment stations. 

57 Annual Eeport of the Commissioner of Agriculture, 1862, pp. 577-587; 
1863, p. 599. 

58 Annual Eeport of the Commissioner of Agriculture, 1868, p. 47. 

430 10 






T— 1 




I— 1 








I— 1 




















T— 1 






I— 1 



















T— 1 






























































































































































































Northern ports 






















States still supplied 38.4 per cent of Great Britain's im- 
ports, which totalled over 7,000,000 quarters. Or taking 
the three-year period from 1861 to 1863, inclusive, the 
United States supplied nearly forty-one per cent of Great 
Britain's wheat and flour imports. It will therefore 
be readily seen that Great Britain's dependence on Amer- 
ican wheat was most acute when the cotton famine was at 
its height; for while Southern cotton was withheld from 
shipment to England, Northern whe'at supplied the deficits 
in bread stutf s which other Nations were unable to furnish. 
These facts go to show that wheat was an economic weapon 
of considerable weight in the hands of the Federal govern- 
ment just at the time when recognition of the Confederacy 
was proposed as a remedy for the cotton famine ; for while 
recognition might have enabled England to procure cotton, 
it would have involved risk of war with the North and the 
consequent cutting off of the bread supply.^^ That this 
fact did not escape the attention of the English government 
is clearly evident from the emphasis accorded to the wheat 
situation by the leading journals and public men of the 

60 The United States Commissioner of Agriculture emphasized the funda- 
mental importance of wheat in the prosecution of the war in the following 
terms : 

' ' The existing rebellion demands that we should look at the corn and wheat 
crops together. From the corn is produced most of our meats. Unitedly they 
form the breadstutfs and meats which now have such a controlling influence at 
home and abroad. Unitedly, too, they stand arrayed against the kingly pre- 
rogatives of cotton, and, therefore, against that rebellion which seeks to over- 
throw a Union which, so wisely and advantageously, has heretofore bound to- 
gether in peace all interest. 

' ' The great staple in our exportation of breadstuff s is wheat. 

' ' The exportation of wheat and flour to Europe has continued to increase 
for many years, until it is certain that its dependence on us is permanent, 
varying, of course, as to the amount, according as the crops of Great 
Britain and the continent may be greater or less. ' ' — Annual Report of the 
Commissioner of Agriculture, 1862, p. 548. 


The Journal of the Royal Agricultural Society of Eng- 
land called attention to England's increasing dependence 
on foreign wheat ; it emphasized the uncertainty of the con- 
tinental supply, owing to the unsettled political and eco- 
nomic conditions then prevailing throughout Europe; and 
it reminded its readers that the United States possessed 
superior advantages for supplying the markets of the 
world.^^ The Economist ^ while according much space to 
cotton, recognized the primary importance of wheat in an 
editorial which appeared on October 25, 1862, just when the 
cotton situation was most serious. After reviewing in de- 
tail the development of the corn trade, it observed that this 
was ^^one of the most remarkable, perhaps the most re- 
markable commercial fact of modern times. As respects 
the mass of the people, it is little to say that their comfort 
is enhanced by these vast importations, for the truth is that 
without such importations our people could not exist at all. 
If we could not subsist our population without foreign aid 
in 1847, we certainly can not subsist them in 1862. The 
Mark Lane Express, one of the leading agricultural jour- 
nals of the country, took a similar view of the food situa- 
tion, but expressed the fear that the United States could 
not supply England's needs, owing to reduction of the 

61 See Lawes and Gilbert's On the Home Produce, Imports, and Consumption 
of Wheat in The Journal of the Eoyal Agricultural Society of England, Second 
Series, Vol. IV, pp. 359-396; and Evershed's Variation in the Price and Sup- 
ply of Wheat in The Journal of the Eoyal Agricultural Society of England, 
Second Series, Vol. V, pp. 153-262. See especially the Appendix to the latter 
article, pp. 198-262, which gives the British consular reports on the foreign 
agriculture during the war period. 

62 Quoted from an editorial with valuable statistics on ''The Immense Pres- 
ent Importation of Corn", in The Economist (London), Vol. XX, No. 1000, 
October 25, 1862, pp. 1179-1180. 

See also letters on The Wheat Supply by ''Ceres", "Mark Lane", and 
"Old Broad Street", printed in The Economist (London), Vol. XX, No. 959, 
.Tanuary 11, 1862, p. 33; No. 960, January 18, 1862, p. 61; No. 961, January 
25, 1862, pp. 90, 91 ; No. 963, February 8, 1862, p. 145. 


rural population by enlistments in the army and to the 
devastation of a considerable portion of the wheat-growing 
area; but the greatly increased importations from the 
northern States corrected this assumption. 

No less significant were the observations of James Caird 
who traveled extensively through the rural districts of 
England and recorded his views of the food situation. In 
speaking before the Statistical Society in 1868 he referred 
to Great Britain's imperative need of foreign grain in past 
years and in the following terms emphasized wheat as the 
first article of necessity: 

The consumption of bread is very constant, .... every- 
thing must be given up before bread, .... bread being the 
staff of life, it must be had by the people whatever the price may 
be. This view is confirmed by inquiries which I have since made 
among some of the leading bakers in the most densely peopled 
quarters of Whitechapel in the east, and the Harrow Road in the 
northwest, one of whom has been 30 years in business, and has now 
three shops in a district entirely inhabited by the working classes. 
Their testimony is, that the consumption of bread is at present 
very large, for although dear, it is still the cheapest article of food 
within reach of the poor ; the next substitute, potatoes, being scarce 
and very dear.^^ 

Mr. Caird added that the '^ one circumstance which might 
severely affect us, would be a continued cessation of sup- 
plies from America. Of the 11,000,000 quarters we im- 
ported in 1862, she gave us five; and as the figures show, 
we have received for many years from her, on the average 
more than one-third of our yearly supply. 

The Merchant's Magazine and Commercial Beview (edited by William B. 
Dana), Vol. 60, pp. 437, 438. See also The Economist (London), Vol. XXI, 
No. 1057, November 28, 1863, p. 1317. 

The Merchant's Magazine and Commercial Beview (edited by William B. 
Dana), Vol. 60, p. 440. 

Lastly, the consumption per head of the population will vary, not only 
according to the amount of employment, and to the price of wheat itself, but 


While the press emphasized Great Britain's dependence 
on American wheat, leading public men of the country, such 
as Bright, Cobden, and Forster, did not fail to impress this 
fact upon the people and upon the governing authorities. 
In a speech delivered before the Manchester Chamber of 
Commerce on October 25, 1862, Mr. Cobden, in reviewing 
British foreign policy in relation to the cotton situation, 
called particular attention to the importance of American 
wheat in these significant terms : 

Recollect that half, at least, of all the exports from America 
come in ordinary times to this country. But our imports from 
America do not consist solely of cotton. It would be bad enough to 
keep out the cotton, to stop your spindles, and throw your work- 
people out of employment. But that is not all. You get an article 
even more important than your cotton from America — your food. 
In the last session of Parliament, an Hon. Member, himself an 
extensive miller and corn-dealer, moved for a return of the quan- 
tity of grain and flour for human food imported into this country 
from September of last year to June in the present year. His ob- 
ject was to show what would have been the effects on the supplies 
of food brought to this kingdom if the apprehension of war, in 
relation to the Trent affair, had unhappily been realized. Well, his 
estimate was, that the food imported from Am.erica between Sep- 
tember of last year and June of this year was equal to the sus- 
tenance of between 3,000,000 and 4,000,000 of people for a whole 
twelve-month, and his remarks to me was .... that if that 
food had not been brought from America, all the money in Lom- 
bard street could not have purchased it elsewhere.^^ 

to that of other consumable articles. If other food-stuffs are cheap a low 
price of wheat may but little increase its consumption; but if other articles 
are dear a relatively low price of wheat will increase its consumption. Again, 
if both wheat and other articles are dear, it may be a question whether the 
consumption of the first necessary of life — hread — will not be increased 
rather than diminished, to compensate for the necessary abstinence from, or 
limitation in the use of, the less absolutely essential food-stuffs." — Quoted 
from Lawes and Gilbert's On the Home Produce, Imports, and Cov.mmption of 
Wheat in The Journal of the Royal AgriculMiral Society of England, Second 
Hcries, Vol. TV, p. .'580. 

Speeches on Questions of Fuhlic Policy hy Eichard Cohden (edited by 
John Bright and J. E. T. Rogers, 1880), pp. 457, 458. 


Mr. Cobden further contended that Great Britain's pow- 
er to interfere in the American war had been exaggerated ; 
that the policy to be pursued by the North was in the hands 
of the great grain-raising States of the Mississippi Valley 
situated remote and inaccessible from the sea; and that if 
this region, populated by 12,000,000 people, was determined 
to continue the war '^all the Powers of Europe could not 
reach that ^far West' to coerce it."^^ Bright spoke in a 
similar vein to large crowds of people, urging that it was 
for the material interest of England to remain neutral in 
the struggle. While, therefore, meetings were called to 
memorialize the government to recognize the independence 
of the Confederacy, such gatherings were counter-balanced 
by other meetings where it was pointed out that recognition 
would be a false step and that it would not bring to Eng- 
land's shores a single ship-load of cotton, unless followed 
up by intervention, which if adopted would mean war: a 
'^war in favor of the Slave Confederacy of the South and 
against the free North and Northwest whence comes a large 
proportion of our imported corn."^^ 

66 ' <■ The policy to be pursued by the North will be decided by the elections 
in the great Western States: I mean the great grain-growing region of the 
Mississippi valley. If the States of Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, 
Wisconsin, and Minnesota — if those States determine to carry on this war — 
if they say, 'We will never make peace and give up the mouth of the Missis- 
sippi, which drains our 10,000 miles of navigable waters into the Gulf of 
Mexico ; we will never make peace while that river is in the hands of a foreign 
Power ', — why, all the Powers of Europe cannot reach that ' far West ' to 
coerce it. It is 1,000 miles inland across the Rocky Mountains, or 1,000 miles 
up the Mississippi, with all its windings, before you get to that vast region — 
that region which is rich beyond all the rest of the world besides, peopled by 
ten or twelve million souls doubling in numbers every few years. It is that 
region which will be the depository in future of the wealth and numbers of that 
great Continent; and whatever the decision of that region is, New York, and 
New England, and Pennsylvania will agree with that decision." Quoted from 
Cobden 's speech at Rochdale, October 29, 1862, printed in Speeches on Ques- 
tions of Public Policy by Richard Cobden (edited by John Bright and J. E. T. 
Rogers, 1880), p. 469. 

«7 Quoted from Watts 's Facts of the Cotton Famine in Scherer's Cotton as 
a World Power, p. 279. 


Nor was British dependence on American wheat ignored 
in the Parliamentary debates. On the very same day that 
the Eoebuck Eesolution was presented, Lord Eobert Mon- 
tague argued that intervention to be successful must ex- 
haust every point in dispute. It was complicated, he said : 
first, by the slavery question; second, by the fact that the 
North had now become a great military power; third, by 
the prospect of the seas being covered with Alabamas and 
Floridas which the North would fit out to prey on English 
ships; and fourth, by the question of the grain supply. 
Eegarding this latter question he said: 

We import largely of grain, onr two chief sources of supply be- 
ing Poland and the North West States of America. Was it likely 
that we should be able to get much from Poland under her present 
circumstances? No. Then we must rest mainly upon supplies 
from North America. But how would war affect that 1 Would not 
the distress in England be aggravated by a war with America? 
Prom the Northern States of America we received 5,500,000 quar- 
ters of com, whereas from the north of Europe we received only 
2,000,000. The total imported into England in 1861 was 16,094,914 
quarters, of which more than one-third came from the North West- 
ern States — namely, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, and Wisconsin — 
whose yearly available produce was not nearly exhausted by their 

These facts led Lord Montague to add: 

If these states could find a market for their corn in England, it 
would promote a good feeling between them and Canada ; but if this 
country went to war with America that good feeling would be pre- 
vented. In fact, a desire for alliance with us was already growing 
up in those States, By holding back from war those North Western 
States will force trade with us, through Canada; and perhaps, with 
that object, enter into close alliance with us, while the transit of 
the goods would be of material benefit to Canada; while by running 

Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 30, 1863, 
pp. 1794, 1795. 


the risk of war we should be injuring ourselves commercially in the 
greatest degree.^^ 

Mr. Forster stated that the Roebuck Resolution meant 
war; that the country at large was not in favor of war; and 
that unless the harvest was better than it promised to be, 
the sufferings of the people would be great indeed if they 
were deprived of the American wheat crop of this year. In 
the light of these facts, Mr. Forster begged the House- of 
Commons to consider what the cost of a war for cotton 
would be in corn."^^ 

Meanwhile events brought the Ministry to a clear realiza- 
tion of the fact that it was to Great Britain's interest to 
remain neutral throughout the continuance of the struggle. 
Northern resources now began to tell heavily against the 
South, thus foreshadowing the ultimate triumph of the 
Federal army and navy. The Emancipation Proclamation 
united Northern sentiment in favor of the prosecution of 
the war and strengthened the support of the Union cause 
among all classes of people in England. No less important 
was Mr. Adams ' calm but firm and tactful insistence on the 
claims of the Union government, which won for himself 
and the cause which he represented the respect of British 
officialdom. But it was Northern wheat that may well be 
regarded as the decisive factor, counter-balancing the in- 
fluence of cotton, in keeping the British government from 
recognizing the Confederacy. 

That the wheat situation in England was a serious one 
can not be denied. It became a subject for detailed investi- 
gation, it received extended treatment in the leading jour- 
nals of the time, and it was accorded considerable emphasis 

69 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 30, 1863, 
p. 1795. 

70 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 171, June 30, 1863, 
pp. 1812, 1818. 


in public speeches and in the debates of Parliament. That 
the wheat situation must have exerted a profound influence 
on the government may reasonably be concluded from the 
evidence presented. The Ministry must have realized that 
a war for Southern cotton would have to be paid for in 
Northern wheat, which would in consequence be withheld 
from shipment to England, and that a food famine would 
entail more serious consequences for England than a cotton 
famine. The Ministry must, in short, have clearly under- 
stood what Bright and Cobden repeatedly urged — that it 
was for Great Britain's material interest to maintain a 
position of official neutrality. These are the facts which 
help to explain why Mr. Eoebuck on July 13th — several 
days before the news of the Northern victories of Gettys- 
burg and Vicksburg was received — decided to withdraw 
his resolution asking for the recognition of the Confeder- 
acy.'^^ This action marks the turning point in Anglo-Amer- 
ican diplomacy during the Civil War period. The danger 
of English intervention in behalf of the Confederacy now 
quickly passed away and Lord Palmerston hastened to 
state publicly that it was consonant with the interests and 
foreign policies of the British government to remain neu- 
tral in the American war.'^^ 

It will therefore be seen that Great Britain's dependence 
on the United States was greatly accentuated during the 
period of our civil conflict. The blockade of the Southern 
ports and the consequent interruption of the cotton supply 
occasioned widespread distress throughout the manufac- 
turing districts, leading to a demand for the recognition of 

71 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 172, July 13, 1863, 
p. 662. 

72 Hansard's Parliamentary Debates, Third Series, Vol. 172, July 13, 1863, 
pp. 668-672. 


the Confederacy which the government appeared for a time 
hardly able to resist. It was while affairs thus hung in the 
balance that England's dependence on Northern wheat was 
most pronounced. When it is remembered that the ques- 
tion of an adequate and cheap food supply concerned the 
masses of the people to no less degree than did the question 
of the cotton supply, it may be seriously questioned whether 
the government would have ventured in the face of public 
opinion to recognize the Confederacy; for recognition im- 
plied forcible intervention and the risk of a war with the 
North and the consequent cutting off of the wheat supply 
when England could ill afford to do without it. Thus did 
economic forces contend for the mastery in the field of 
Anglo-American diplomacy during one of the most critical 
periods in the history of our foreign affairs. In this con- 
test wheat won, demonstrating its importance as a world 
power of greater significance than cotton, which the South 
had by 1860 come to regard as an effective economic weap- 
on with which it could bring England to its aid and thus 
establish its independence. 

Louis Beknakd Schmidt 

The Iowa State College of 
Agriculture and Mechanic Arts 
Ames Iowa. 


Iowa Stories: Book Two. By Clarence Ray Aurner. Iowa 
City: Published by the author. 1918. Pp. 174. Plates, maps. 
This volume is a continuation of the material in Book One of this 
series which is designed for use by the pupils in the lower grades 
of the public schools. There are eighteen chapters dealing with the 
following subjects : Territorial governments over the Iowa country, 
the establishment and government of counties, the first townships, 
the admission of Iowa into the Union, the location of the seat of 
government at Iowa City, the Missouri-Iowa boundary dispute, the 
early history of the railroads, the school fund, the establishment of 
the public school system, the establishment of the State University, 
the early colleges of Iowa, the first newspapers, the exploration of 
the Iowa country, and Indian land cessions in Iowa. 

The book contains numerous cuts, maps, and charts, which help 
to vivify the text, while the stories are told in simple language 
capable of being understood by young readers. This volume will 
no doubt receive the same welcome from public school teachers 
which was accorded to its predecessor in the same series. 

A Handbook of Manuscripts in the Library of Congress which 
has recently been issued will be very useful to all persons engaged 
in historical research. There are brief descriptions of the docu- 
ments and a comprehensive index. 

A monograph of more than one hundred and sixty pages on The • 
State Movement for Efficiency and Economy, by Raymond Moley, | 
is a dissertation submitted at Columbia University. I 

The Founding of Vermont: The Controversy over the New Hamp- \ 
shire Grant, by Joel N. Eno ; another installment of Chapters in the I 
History of Halifax, Nova Scotia, by Arthur W. H. Eaton; an un- i 




signed article entitled A Rare Old Flag; and The Expulsion of the 
British Consuls hy the Confederate Government, by Milledge L. 
Bonham, Jr., are contributions in the April number of Americana. 

^1 A List of Official Publications of American State Constitutional 
Conventions, 1776-1916, compiled by Augustus H. Shearer, is a 
useful publication of the Newberry Library of Chicago. 

The Fourteenth Annual Report of the Library Board of the Vir- 
ginia State Library is accompanied by A Register of the General 
Assembly of Virginia 1776-1918 and of the Constitutional Conven- 
j tions, compiled by Earl G. Swem and John W. Williams. 

Two articles in The Geographical Review for April are: Amer- 
ican Explorers of Africa, by Edwin S. Balch ; and The Influence of 

, Geographical Environment upon Religious Beliefs, by R. H. Whit- 
beck. In the May number, among others, are the following articles : 
The Growth of American Cities, by Lawrence V. Roth ; Some Influ- 

I ences of the Sea upon the Industries of New England, by Malcolm 
Keir; and The ''Old-Fashioned" Winter of 1917-8, by Charles F. 

' The American Review of Reviews for March contains the follow- 
ing articles, among others : Illinois, the New Keystone of the Union, 
by Frank 0. Lowden; and Chicago — North Americans Transpor- 
tation Center, by George C. Sikes. 

The Privileges and Immunities of State Citizenship is the title 
of a monograph by Roger Howell, which constitutes a recent num- 
ber of the Johns Hopkins University Studies in Historical and Po- 
i litical Science. The history of the comity clause, the general scope 
\ of the comity clause, rights protected against discriminatory legis- 
! lation, rights not protected against discriminatory legislation, dis- 
criminatory legislation under the police power, power of the States 
over foreign corporations, and conclusions are the subjects em- 
braced in the seven chapters. 

The Journal of American History for March is devoted to illus- 
! trated articles dealing with various phases of Great Britain's par- 
ticipation in the Great War. Among the articles are the following : 

VOL. XVI — 29 


The Epic of Ypres: The Great Battles of the Famous Salient, by 
John Buchan ; The British Navy, by Alfred Noyes ; The Economics 
of the War, by R. H. Brand; and Great Britain's Sinews of War, 
by Dominick Spring-Rice. 

Among the articles in The South Atlantic Quarterly for April 
are the following: The Spirit of Youth in Arms, by Walter Gra- 
ham; The Budget System and Popidar Control, by Robert H. 
Tucker; and Function and Method in the Teaching of History, by 
Edward J. Woodhouse. 

Benjamin Banneher, the Negro Mathematician and Astronomer, 
by Henry E. Baker; George Liele and Andrew Bryan, Pioneer Ne- 
gro Baptist Preachers, by John W. Davis ; Fifty Years of Howard 
University, by Dwight 0. W. Holmes ; and More About the Histor- 
ical Errors of James Ford Rhodes, by John R. Lynch, are articles 
in the April number of The Journal of Negro History, Under the 
heading of "Documents" will be found some letters of Governor 
Edward Coles bearing on the struggle of freedom and slavery in 

Four articles in The American Political Science Review for May 
are the following: Revolutionary Russia, by Simon Litman; The 
Juristic Conception of the State, by W. W. Willoughb}^; The Bach- 
ground of American Federalism, by Andrew C. McLaughlin; and 
New Methods in Due-Process Cases, by Albert M. Kales. Subjects 
treated in the Legislative Notes and Reviews, edited by W. F. Dodd, 
are: absent-voting laws, 1917; reform of legislative procedure in 
Nebraska; pensions for public employees; constitutional amend- 
ments and referenda measures, 1917 ; and constitutional conven- 

The May number of The Annals of the American Academy of 
Political and Social Science deals with the general subject of Social 
Work with Families. The various articles are grouped under the 
following headings: the approach to the social case treatment, social 
case work with the physically or mentally handicapped, and social 
case work with the socially handicapped. The supplement to this 



number contains a monograph on Procedure in State Legislatures ^ 
by H. W. Dodds. There are six chapters dealing with the legisla- 
ture's inherent powers in matters of procedure, the organization of 
the houses, introduction of bills, committees, passage of bills, and 
legislative leadership. 

Under the heading of Our War Documents in the January num- 
ber of The Military Historian and Economist there is a plea for a 
public record office and an archives building at Washington, D. C. 
Other articles are: Naval History: Mahan and his Successors; the 
second installment of Man and Nature at Port Hudson 1863, by 
Milledge L. Bonham, Jr. ; and part two of Pope's Campaign in Vir- 
ginia, by R. M. Johnston. In the April number there are four con- 
tributions: The Historical Section in a General Staff, by Paul 
Azan ; Manufacturing Development During the Civil War, by Vic- 
tor S. Clark; Salonika and the War in the East, by Rene Pinon; 
and Are we in Danger of Becoming Prussianized?, by T. N. Carver. 


Number twenty-nine of the Filson Cluh Publications consists of 
a monograph of over one hundred and sixty pages on The Anti- 
Slavery Movement in Kentucky Prior to 1850, by Asa Earl Martin. 

Clans and Moieties in Southern California, by Edward Winslow 
Gifford, is a monograph recently published in the University of 
California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology. 

The Art of George Catlin, by Edwin S. Balch, is an article of 
interest to students of Mississippi Valley history which appears in 
volume fifty-seven, number two, of the Proceedings of the American 
Philosophical Society. 

The Washington University Studies for April contains a mono- 
graph by Chauncey S. Boucher on The Secession and Co-operation 
Movements in South Carolina, 1848 to 1852. 

Two numbers of the Studies in the Social Sciences published by 
the University of Minnesota, which have recently appeared, are the 


following : A History of the Tariff Relations of the Australian Col- 
onies, by Cephas D. Allin; and A Study of State Aid to PuHic 
Schools in Minnesota, by Raymond A. Kent. 


F. A. "Welch discusses The Junior Bed Cross and its Work in the 
April number of Midland Schools. 

Continuations of Timbers for the Temple: A Story of Old Nauvoo 
in the Days of her Glory, by Elbert A. Smith, appear in Autumn 
Leaves for April, May, and June. 

In the March- April number of the Iowa State Highway Commis- 
sion Service Bulletin may be found statistics of expenditures for 
road and bridge work in Iowa for the four years 1914 to 1917, 

Two articles appear in the Iowa Law Bulletin for May, namely : 
Spendthrift Trusts in Iowa, by H. C. Horack ; and Iowa Decisions 
on Breach of Marriage Promise, by Herbert F. Goodrich. 

Among the articles in The Northwestern Banker for April are 
the following: Poison Growth of Prussianism, by Otto H. Kahn; 
and The Civilian's Duty During the War, by Frederick W. Gehle. 
In the June number, among others, are the following articles: 
Patriotic People of the TJ. S. A., by George T. McCandless; Some 
Problems of War and Peace, by Sidney A. Foster; The Menace of 
Tax Exemption, by E. D. Chassell; and American Financial Awak- 
ening, by George Lawther. 

Abolish Public Service Commission, by George F. Thompson; 
and Movement for Proportional Representation, by C. G. Hoag, are 
among the papers in the April number of American Municipalities. 
In the May issue there is a description of a New Method of Tax 
Levy. Two articles in the June number are of interest from the 
standpoint of the financing of war activities, namely: Webster 
County's Patriot's Fund, and An Argument Against the War 


Scenes of Early Days, by Heman C. Smith ; the Autobiography 
of Elder William H. Greenwood (Seventy) of British Isles; and a 
continuation of the History of Presidents of Seventy, in which is to 
be found the autobiography of Elder Elmer E. Long, are contribu- 
tions in the April number of the Journal of History published at 
Lamoni, Iowa, by the Reorganized Ohurch of Jesus Christ of Latter 
Day Saints. 

An address delivered at St. Paul on April 5th by Judge Martin 
J. Wade at a mass meeting held under the auspices of the America 
First Association has been printed in pamphlet form. 

Among the numerous papers in volume nineteen of the Bulletin 
of Iowa Institutions are the following : Assets, Not Liabilities : Citi- 
zens, Not Wards, by Miriam E. Carey; The State Psychopathic 
Hospital, by Albert M. Barrett ; The Receding Tide of Civilization, 
by Harry C. Bowman; Cooperation Between the Board of Control 
and the State Board of Education, by W. R. Boyd; The Perkins 
Law and its Operation, by W. T. Graham; What Iowa is Doing for 
its Old Soldiers, by B. C. Whitehill; and Governor Larrabee's Work 
as a Member of the Board of Control of State Institutions, by John 

Edwin W. Stanton is the writer of a Eulogy on the Life of Mrs. 
Rowena Edson Stevem which appears in the May number of The 
Alumnus of Iowa State College. An article on Iowa State's Train- 
ing Camp tells of the special training in mechanics for drafted men 
which is being conducted at the College. There is also a biograph- 
ical sketch of Franklin B. Gault. In the June- July number there 
are biographical sketches of Julia Blodgett Hainer and Ralph 
Leonard Collett; and the Service Roll of the College up to date. 

Decorah — In the Switzerland of Iowa is an illustrated article 
by Edwin C. Bailey in the April number of The Iowa Magazine, in 
which there is considerable historical data. Other articles are: A 
Complete Indictment of Disloyalty, by G. F. Rinehart; Stefansson's 
New Race — Blonde Eskimo, by Edith Saylor; and Judge Logan 
and his Work for Iowa. In the June number there is an account 


of Iowa's record in the Third Liberty Loan Campaign. Under the 
heading of Iowa's War Activities are some interesting facts and 
figures. Simpson College, Indianvla, Iowa, is the subject of an 
article by Fay Nixon Speer. 

Among the many papers in the Proceedings of the Nineteenth 
Iowa State Conference of Social Work (formerly known as the 
Iowa State Conference of Charities and Correction) are the follow- 
ing: Social Legislation, with Especial Reference to the Work of the 
Last General Assembly of Iowa, by Paul S. Peirce; Training Vol- 
unteers for Home Service with Soldiers' Families, by J. L. Gillin; 
The State as the Great Community, by Robert A. Woods; Lator 
Situation in Iowa, by A. L. Urick; The Iowa Child Welfare Re- 
search Station, State University of Iowa, by B. T. Baldwin; Civilian 
Belief Work in the State of Iowa, by 0. E. Klingaman; Progress 
and Problems of Children's Code-making, by F. E. Haynes; and 
The Need of a National Vagrancy Act, by J. C. Sanders. 

A very practical service for the soldiers is described in The Iowa 
Alumnus for March under the heading of University Treats Sol- 
diers' Garments for Vermin. There is also an address on Patriotism 
delivered by Laenas 0. Weld at the Foundation Day exercises in 
February. Home Economics and War Service, by Ruth A. Ward- 
all; and descriptions of the two scientific expeditions sent out by 
the University this spring under Charles C. Nutting and Homer R. 
Dill, are among the contents of the April number. In May there 
may be found a biographical sketch of Major-General George W. 
Bead, by Edwin L. Sabin; a discussion of The Extension Division 
and the Bed Cross, by 0. E. Klingaman; and some data concerning 
The University in the War. The June number contains, besides an 
account of the 1918 commencement exercises, a number of additions 
to the Honor Roll of the University. 

The most recent number of the Studies in the Social Sciences, 
published by the State University of Iowa and edited by F. E. 
Haynes, is a discussion of The Iowa Plan for the Combination of 
Public and Private Belief, by Bessie A. McClenahan. There are 
eight chapters, the first of which is the introduction. Chapter two 



deals with legislation concerning public relief in Iowa, and chapter 
three describes the administration of poor relief in Polk County. 
The next three chapters are concerned with the cost of poor relief 
in Iowa, variations in administration, and the difficulties of admin- 
istration. The seventh chapter describes the workings of the Iowa 
combination plan in Grinnell, Oskaloosa, Waterloo, Ottumwa, Bur- 
lington, Fort Dodge, and Cedar Rapids, and points out the sig- 
nificance of the plan. The concluding chapter suggests a State 
program, including a discussion of the dangers and advantages of 
the combination plan, and contains recommendations for the im- 
provement of the present system. ''Miss McClenahan, the author 
of the monograph, has been the leader in the state in the wider use 
of the Iowa plan", says the editor in his introduction. ''In the 
larger number of instances where it has been adopted, she has made 
the preliminary survey in connection with her work for the Exten- 
sion Division of the State University of Iowa." 


Adams, Henry Carter, 

American Railway Accounting. New York : Henry Holt & Co. 

Aurner, Clarence Ray, 

loiva Stories: Book Tivo. Iowa City. Published by the author. 
Bone, Hugh Alvin, 

Geographic Factors in American History. Sioux City: Pub- 
lished by the author. 1917. 
Catt, Mrs. Carrie Chapman, 

Why We Bid Not Picket the White House (Good Housekeep- 
ing, March, 1918). 
Clarkson, Coker Fifield, 

Automobiles in the Great War (Scientific American Supple- 
ment, January 26, 1918). 
Hall, James Norman, 

High Adventure. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co. 1918. 


Hansen, Marcus L., 

Old Fort SnelUng 1819-1858. Iowa City: The State Historical 
Society of Iowa. 1918. / 
Heilman, Ralph Emerson, 

Do You Keep Your Men Too Long? (System, April, 1918). 
Hillis, Newell Dwight, 

The Agony of France (Canadian Magazine, March, 1918). 
Hoover, Herbert Clark, 

Food for All — A Fundamental War Prohlem (Scientific 
American, April 6, 1918). 
Hornaday, William Temple, 

Awake! America: Object Lessons and Warnings. New York: 
MofPat, Yard & Co. 1918. 
Hough, Emerson, ^ 

The Way Out: A Story of the Cumherlands To-day. New 
York: D. Appleton & Co. 1918. ^ 
Hughes, Rupert, 

The Unpardonable Sin. New York : Harper & Brothers. 1918. 
Keyes, Charles Rollin, 

Rate of Desert Delta Growth (Science, February 22, 1918). 
Kruse, Paul J., 

Strategic Retreat (School and Society, May 4, 1918). * 
Lowden, Frank Orren, 

Illinois, the New Keystone of the Union (American Review of 
Reviews, March, 1918). 
MacLean, George Edwin, 

Women's Colleges in Great Britain (School and Society, Janu- 
ary 12, 1918). 
McClenahan, Bessie A., 

The Iowa Plan for the Combination of Public and Private Re- 
lief. Iowa City : The State University of Iowa. 1918. 
Merry, Glenn Newton, 

National Defense and Public Speaking (Quarterly Journal of 
Speech Education, January, 1918) ; War and Intercollegiate 
Contests (Quarterly Journal of Speech Education, May, 



Mott, John Raleigh, 

View of the Situation in Russia (Missionary Review, March, 
Newton, Joseph Fort, 

The Mercy of Hell; and Other Sermons. Boston: Murray 
Press. 1917. 
Patrick, George T. W., 

The Psychology of Social Reconstruction (The Scientific 
Monthly, June, 1918). 
Piper, Edwin Ford, 

Dry Bones (Overland, April, 1918) ; Road and Path (Current 
Opinion, January, 1918). 
Pollock, Ivan L., 

History of Economic Legislation in Iowa. Iowa City: The 
State Historical Society of Iowa. 1918. 
Richardson, Anna Steese, 

Lure of the Office (Woman's Home Companion, March, 1918) ; 
Soldiers All (Woman's Home Companion, May, 1918) ; My 
Visit to Our Sailor Boys (Woman's Home Companion, June, 
Ross, Edward Als worth, 

Russia in Upheaval. New York : The Century Co. 1918. 
Lahor and Capital in Russia (Century, May, 1918) ; Soil Hun- 
ger in Russia (Century, April, 1918) ; Russian Women and 
Their Outlook (Century, June, 1918) ; Social Decadence 
(American Journal of Sociology, March, 1918) ; Principle of 
Balance (American Journal of Sociology, May, 1918). 
Steiner, Edward Alfred, 

Wrong Strategy (Outlook, January 2, 1918). 


The Frontier Sketches, running in the Burlington Post. 
Early Railroad Days, in the McGregor Times, April 4, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of William T. Lyon, in the Bayard Advocate, 
April 4, 1918. 


Sketch of the life of Benjamin F. Crocker, in the Sigourney News, 
April 10, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Mrs. W. R. Houghton, in the Sigourney News, 

April 10, 17, 1918. 
Spirit Lake Massacre Recalled by Member of Relief Expedition, in 

the Estherville Democrat, April 10, 1918. 
Mrs. Abbie Gardner Sharp — Survivor of Famous Spirit Lake Mas- 
sacre, in the Ames Times, April 10, 1918. 
A Term of Court in the Early Days of Knoxville, in the Knoxville 

Express, April 10, 1918. 
April in History, in the Colfax Clipper, April 11, 1918. 
Fifty Years a Railroad Man, in the Tama Herald, April 11, 1918. 
Shiloh Anniversary, by James Reagin, in the Bloomfield Bepuh- 

lican, April 11, 1918. 
Fiftieth Anniversary of First Unitarian Church of Davenport, in 

the Davenport Times, April 11, 1917. 
Sketch of the life of Rev. J. E. Snowden, in the Oshaloosa Herald, 

April 11, 1918 ; and the Cedar Falls Record, April 12, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of F. F. Hughes, in the Vinton Times, April 12, 


Sketch of the life of Jacob Harper, in the Alhia Union, April 12, 

Reminiscences of Former Members of First Unitarian Church, in 

the Davenport Democrat, April 14, 1918. 
Jubilee Service of Methodist Church, in the Ames Times, April 15, 


Eulogy on the Life of Mrs. J. L. Stevens, by Edwin W. Stanton, in 
the Boone N ews-Republican, April 15, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Mrs. J. W. Hurd, by Betty Low, in the North- 
wood Anchor, April 17, 1918. 

James G. Whitney — In the Banking Business for Forty Years, in 
the Atlantic News-Telegraph, April 17, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Conrad L. Grimsby, in the New Hampton 
Tribune, April 17, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Judge Alfred N. Hobson, in the Neiv Hampton 
Gazette, April 17, 1918. 



Sketch of the life of James T. Johnston, in the Bedford Times- 
Bepuhlican, April 18, 1918. 

Memories of Pella, in the Pella Chronicle, April 18, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Judge Alfred N. Hohson, in the Elhader Reg- 
ister & Argus, April 18, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Harry H. Phillips, in the Newton Record, April 
18, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Fayette S. Ranney, in the Storm Lake Tribune, 
April 19, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Daniel Boone Wright, in the Boone Independ- 
ent, April 19, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Thomas Wilkinson, in the Fort Madison Demo- 
crat, April 22, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Anson D. Bicknell, in the Fort Dodge Messen- 
ger, April 23, 1918. 

Southwest Iowa has Unique War Record, in the Anita Tribune, 
April 24, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of James C. Reams, in the Tama Herald, April 

24, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of William E. Fuller, in the Mason City Globe- 
Gazette, April 24, 1918, and the West Union Gazette, April 24, 

Two Pioneers — S. H. Taft and A. D. Bicknell, in the Des Moines 

Tribune, April 24, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of Daniel Dow, in the Clarinda Journal, April 

25, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Anson D. Bicknell, in the Humboldt Inde- 
pendent, April 25, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Kirk wood Jewett, in the Des Moines Tribune, 
May 1, 1918. 

Journal is Fifty Years Old, in the Leon Journal, May 2, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of John Thomas Metcalf, in the Waukon Stand- 
ard, May 3, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Stephen H. Taft, in the Humboldt Republican, 
May 3, 1918. 

George Upp, Painter, by Blanch Wingate, in the Des Moines Reg- 
ister, May 5, 1918. 


Some Reminiscences of Uncle Billy Moore, in the Des Moines Beg- 
ister, May 6, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of John H. Wheeler in the Shenandoah Sentinel- 
Post, May 8, 1918. 

Women's Work for Soldiers During Civil War, in the Malvern 
Leader, May 9, 1918. 

Little Log Cabin in the Lane — Oldest Building in North Tama, by 
Ella C. Taylor, in the Traer Star-Clipper, May 10, 1918. 

Reunion of Former Students in St. Ambrose School, in the Des 
Moines Register, May 12, 1918. 

History of Nora Springs, in the Mason City Glohe-Gazette, May 14, 

History of the Washington Press, in the Washington Press, May 15, 

Sketch of the life of Judge William H. Fahey, in the Guthrie Cen- 
ter Guthrian, May 16, 1918. 

Benjamin F. Osborn — Forty Years in Rippey, in the Jefferson 
Bee, May 16, 1918. 

Old Drum Used in Civil War, in the Jefferson Herald, May 16, 

Tribute to Mrs. Tacitus Hussey, in the Des Moines Capital, May 20, 

C. W. Smith of Cherokee Passed Through Indian Massacre of 1862, 

in the Cherokee Times, May 20, 1918. 
Early Days in Jefferson County, in the Fairfield Ledger, May 22, 


Raising Money for Soldier Relief Work in Civil War, in the Jeffer- 
son Bee, May 22, 1918. 

Story of Iowa's First Creamery, in the New Hampton Gazette, May 
23, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Judge Alfred H. McVey, in the Des Moines 

Capital, May 27, 1918. 
Events in Van Buren County Sixty Years Ago, in the Keosauqua 

RepuUican, May 30, 1918. 
Early Days in Wapello County, in the Ottumwa Courier, May 31, 




Sketch of the life of James S. Clarkson, in the Des Moines Tribune, 
May 31, 1918. 

Tribute to James S. Clarkson, in the Des Moines Capital, June 1, 

Glimpse of "Webster City in 1857, in the Webster City Journal, 
June 4, 6, 1918. 

The Spirit Lake Massacre, in the Montezuma Palladium, June 4, 
11, 1918. 

Sketch of the life of Mrs. Ellis-Woods, a Leader in Women's Work 
During the Civil War, in the Fairfield Ledger, June 5, 1918. 

Memories of Pella, by C. M. Moore, in the Pella Chronicle, June 6, 

Sketch of the life of James S. Clarkson, in the Des Moines Plain 

Talk, June 6, 1918. 
Anniversary Day in Carroll County History, in the Glidden 

Graphic, June 6, 1918. 
"Ret" Clarkson Threatened with Death in Historic Prohibition 

Fight Thirty-five Years Ago, in the Des Moines Register, June 

9, 1918. 

Ainsworth 's Letter to Clarkson, in the Des Moines Register, June 9, 

Recollections of Clarkson, by John F. Dobbs, in the Des Moines 

Register, June 9, 1918. 
Sketch of the life of John A. Barber, in the Estherville Republican, 

June 12, 1918. 

Early History of Van Buren County, in the Keosauqua Gem, June 
13, 1918. 

Conditions During the Civil War, by Dr. M. L. Bartlett, in the 

Des Moines Capital, June 14, 1918. 
Monument to Chemeuse or ''Johnny Green", in the Des Moines 

Register, June 16, 1918. 
High Prices During Civil War, in the Hampton Recorder, June 19, 


The Mexican War, by Cyril B. Upham, in the Clinton Herald, June 
22, 24, 25, 1918. 



The Ohio Archaeological and Historical Quarterly for April is 
devoted to appendices to Edward A. Miller's monograph on The 
History of Educational Legislation in Ohio, which was published 
in the January number. 

A brief article on Sugar in the Revolutionary War, which ap- 
pears in the January number of the Proceedings of the New Jersey 
Historical Society, is of current interest. 

Volume two of the Annual Report of the American Historical 
Association for 1914 consists of a general index to the Papers and 
Annual Reports of the Association from 1884 to 1914, compiled by 
David Maydole Matteson. 

Nebraska History and Record of Pioneer Days is the name of a 
new monthly publication which the Nebraska State Historical So- 
ciety began issuing in February, It contains notes concerning the 
work of the Society and activities in the State at large along his- 
torical lines. Addison E. Sheldon is the editor. 

A detailed account of The Meeting of the American Historical 
Association at Philadelphia appears in the opening pages of The 
American Historical Review for April. Then follow three articles, 
namely: The Mikado's Ratification of the Foreign Treaties, by 
Payson J. Treat; The Committee on the Conduct of the Civil War, 
by William Whatley Pierson, Jr. ; and Austro-German Relations 
Since 1866, by Roland G. Usher. 

In an article entitled The Dawn of the Woman's Movement in 
the April number of the Western Pennsylvania Historical Magazine 
Charles W. Dahlinger presents an account of the origin and history 
of the Pennsylvania law of 1848 relative to married women's prop- 




An article of general interest which opens the Indiana Magazine 
of History for June is one by George S. Cottman entitled Some 
Reminiscences of James Whitcoml) Riley. Will Maurer is the 
writer of A Historical Sketch of Tell City, Indiana. An interesting 
Diary of the Mexican War, kept by Thomas Bailey, a musician in 
the Fifth Regiment of Indiana Volunteers; and the concluding in- 
stallment of J. Edward Murr's study of Lincoln in Indiana are 
other contributions. 

The January number of The South Carolina Historical and Gen- 
ealogical Magazine is almost entirely devoted to an article on 
Charleston and Charleston Neck: The Original Grantees and the 
Settlements along the Ashley and Cooper Rivers, by Henry A. M. 

The Journal of the Presbyterian Historical Society for June 
opens with a discussion of Shakespeare and the Metrical Psalms, by 
Louis F. Benson, How Princeton Seminary Got to Work is the 
subject of an article by Benjamin B. Warfield; while Joseph M. 
Batten's study of the Life of Alexander Henderson is concluded in 
this number. 

Two articles in The Wisco7isin Magazine of History for June are : 
Colonel Elmer E. Ellsworth: First Hero of the Civil War, by 
Charles A. Ingraham; and The Paid Revere Print of the Boston 
Massacre, by Louise Phelps Kellogg. There are also Some Letters 
of Paul 0. Husting Concerning the Present Crisis. Under the head- 
ing of "Historical Fragments" there appear notes on the begin- 
nings of Milwaukee, the Senatorial election of 1869, and the alien 
suffrage provision in the Constitution of Wisconsin. A communi- 
cation concerning Daniel Webster's Wisconsin investments is of 
general interest. 

Populism in Louisiana During the Nineties is the title of a paper 
by Melvin J. White which is the opening contribution in The Mis- 
sissippi Valley Historical Review for June. A biographical sketch 
of Stephen F. Austin is written by Eugene C. Barker; William L. 
Jenks discusses Territorial Legislation hy Governor and Judges; 


and Arthur C. Cole presents a survey of Historical Activities in the 
Old Northwest. There is also a short article by "William Trimble 
entitled A Reconsideration of Gold Discoveries in the Northwest. 

Grooved Stone Axes, by Charles E. Brown; Effigy Mounds in 
Northern Illinois, by T. H. Lewis ; and Additional Wisconsin Indian 
Medals, by Charles E. Brown, are articles in the April number of 
The Wisconsin Archeologist. 

In the Historical Collections of the Essex Institute for April 
there are the following articles, among others : The Salem Iron Fac- 
tory, by Francis B. C. Bradlee; and Hathorne: Part of Salem Vil- 
lage in 1700, by Sidney Perley. 

The April-June number of the Quarterly Publication of the His- 
torical and Philosophical Society of Ohio is devoted to another in- 
stallment of Selections from the Follett Papers, edited by L. B. 

The opening contribution in The Quarterly of the Oregon His- 
torical Society for March is an article on the History of TJmpqua 
Academy, by R. A. Booth. Some Reminiscences of Early Days at 
the Old TJmpqua Academy are related by George B. Kuykendall; 
and Austin Mires presents Some Recollections of Old TJmpqua 
Academy. Other articles are: The TJmpqua Academy Students' 
Association, by J. H. Booth ; Early History of Southern Oregon, by 
Binger Hermann; and Joel Ware: A Sketch, by George Stowell. 

Bishop Flaget's Diary, by W. J. Howlett; and Eleanor C. Don- 
nelly, by Honor Walsh, are among the articles in the March num- 
ber of the Records of the American Catholic Historical Society. 

A biographical sketch of James J. Hill, by Joseph G. Pyle ; and a 
study of The Organization of the Volunteer Army in 1861 ivith 
Special Reference to Minnesota, by John D. Hicks, are the two arti- 
cles which appear in the February number of the Minnesota His- 
tory Bulletin. 

Two articles are to be found in the Tennessee Historical Magazine 
for December, namely: The Spanish Conspiracy in Tennessee, by 



Archibald Henderson ; and Old Fort London, by John H. DeWitt. 
There are also some Selected Letters, 1846-1856, from the Donelson 
Papers, with introduction and notes by St. George L. Sioussat. 

The second installment of Florence Elizabeth Holladay's study 
of The Powers of the Commander of the Confederate Trans-Missis- 
sippi Department, 1863-1865, occupies the opening pages of The 
Southwestern Historical Quarterly for April. Philip C. Tucker 
contributes an article on The United States Gunboat Harriet Lane; 
and Ben C. Stuart is the writer of a sketch of Hamilton Stuart: 
Pioneer Editor. There is also another section of the Minutes of the 
Ayuntamiento of San Felipe de Austin, 1828-1832, edited by 
Eugene C. Barker. 

The Retreat from Petersburg to Appomattox — Personal Recol- 
lections, by Joseph Packard; and Hon. Daniel Dulany, 1685-1753, 
by Richard Henry Spencer, are two contributions to be found in 
the March number of the Maryland Historical Magazine. 

The Dog's Hair Blankets of the Coast Salish, by F. W. Howay; 
Archibald MacDonald: Biography and Genealogy, by William S. 
Lewis; a continuation of the diary of David Thompson's Journeys 
in the Spokane Country, edited by T. C. Elliott; and another in- 
stallment of Edmond S. Meany's study of the Origin of Washing- 
ton Geographic Names make up the contents of The Washington 
Historical Quarterly for April. Documentary material in this 
number consists of .the proceedings of the Washington constitu- 
tional convention of 1878. 

A Self-effaced Philanthropist: Cornelius Heeney, 1754-1848, by 
Thomas F. Meehan; Centenary of Ohio's Oldest Catholic Church 
(1818-1918), by Victor 'Daniel; and A Centennial of the Church 
in St. Louis, by Charles L. Souvay, are among the articles in the 
April number of The Catholic Historical Review. 

A Report on the Archives in the Executive Department, State 
Capitol, Lansing, is to be found in the Michigan History Magazine 
for April. Among the papers are the following: Michigan in the 
Great War, by Roy C. Vandercook; The Creation of the Territory 

VOL. XVI — 30 


of Michigan, by William L. Jenks ; History of Prohibition Legisla- 
tion in Michigan, by Floyd B, Streeter; James Burrill Angell and 
the University of Michigan, by Wilfred B. Shaw ; and The Pageant 
of Escandba and Correlated Local History, by F. E. King. 

Camp Zachary Taylor, by Ella Hutchison Ellwanger; The Har- 
dins in the Footsteps of the Boone Trail, by Faustina Kelly; and 
More about Bathurst and the Family that Lived There and at 
Spring Garden, by L. H. Jones, are three articles included in the 
contents of The Register of the Kentucky State Historical Society 
for May. 

Among the numerous papers in volume ten, part three, of the 
Annual Publications of the Historical Society of Southern Cali- 
fornia are the following : What is Nationality!, by Tully C. Knoles ; 
The Dispensing of Justice under the Mexican Regime, by C. C. 
Baker; John Bidwell: A Prince among Pioneers, by Rockwell D. 
Hunt ; Thomas R. Bard and the Beginnings of the Oil Industry in 
Southern California, by Waldemar Westergaard; Larkin's De- 
scription of California, by Robert G. Cleland ; and De Tal Palo Tal 
Astilla, by H. W. Mills. 

Among the contributions in the January-March number of the 
American Anthropologist are the following: Further Considera- 
tions of the Occurrence of Human Remains in the Pleistocene De- 
posits at Vero, Florida, by Oliver P. Hay; and Certain Pre-Colum- 
bian Notices of the Inhabitants of the Atlantic Islands, by W. H. 

In Memoriam — Francis Asbury Sampson, 1842-1918, is the sub- 
ject of a biographical sketch by Floyd C. Shoemaker which occupies 
the opening pages in the April number of The Missouri Historical 
Review. There is a description of the celebration of Missouri's 
First Centennial Day at Columbia on January 8, 1918. Another 
installment of H. A. Trexler's study of Missouri-Montana Highways 
deals with the overland route. There is another section of Gott- 
fried Duden's ''Report'', 1824-1827, translated by William O. Bek. 
Finally, there is the third article in Floyd C. Shoemaker's series on 
Missouri and the War. 



Conventionality in History, by Gilbert G. Benjamin; Internal 
Problems During the Civil War, by Carl R. Fish ; Collateral Read- 
ing in Recent American History, by Paul T. Smith ; and Some Geo- 
graphical Aspects of the War, by Samuel B. Harding, are articles 
in the April number of The History Teacher's Magazine. In the 
May issue, among others, there are the following papers : The War 
— Its Practical Lessons to Democracy, by Frederick A. Cleveland ; 
President Lincoln and his War-time Critics, by Arthur C. Cole; 
Historical Preparedness, by Solon J. Buck ; and The American Civil 
War from the British View-point, by Ephraim D. Adams. Among 
the numerous articles in the June number is one by Frederic L. 
Paxson on The Spirit of Present History. 

The Influence of Peculiar Conditions in the Early History of 
North Carolina, by Paul B. Barringer; Reminiscences of the Secre- 
taries of State, by Gaillard Hunt; Historical Parallels, by D. H. 
Hill ; The Influence of the Civil War on Education in North Caro- 
lina, by Edgar W. Knight; The South' s Pension and Relief Provi- 
sions for the SoMers of the Confederacy, by William H. Glasson; 
Medical and Pharmaceutical Conditions in the Confederacy, by E. 
Vernon Howell; The Raising, Organization, and Equipment of 
North Carolina Troops During the Civil War, by Walter Clark ; and 
The Work of the North Carolina Historical Commission During the 
Past Year, by R. D. W. Connor, are papers in the Proceedings of 
the Eighteenth Annual Session of the State Literary and Historical 
Association of North Carolina. 

About seventy pages in the Journal of the Illinois State Histor- 
ical Society for April, 1917, are occupied by a valuable monograph 
on Transportation — A Factor in the Development of Northern Illi- 
nois Previous to 1860, by Judson Fiske Lee. Students of Iowa his- 
tory v/ill find much use for this study which has in part to do with 
the building of railroads from Chicago to the Mississippi River. 
Other contributions are : Shall Indian Languages he Preserved?, by 
Jacob P. Dunn; two articles on The Lincoln-Thornton Debate of 
1856 at Shelhyville, Illinois, by D. C. Smith and Homer H. Cooper ; 
an address on Abraham Lincoln, by Norman G. Plagg; The Cath- 


olic Bishops of the Diocese of Alton, Illinois, by A. Zurbonsen; 
John Foster Leaverton, Soldier of the American Revolution, Amer- 
ican Pioneer, and his Descendants, by Nancy J. Leaverton Sale; 
and a letter describing A Pioneer Farm House in Illinois, written 
by Palmer D. Edmunds. 


The State Historical Society of Missouri held its fifteenth annual 
meeting on January 8, 1918. The preceding year witnessed a net 
increase of one hundred and thirty-five in the number of members 
of the Society — making the total number over twelve hundred. 

The Michigan Pioneer and Historical Society held its annual 
meeting for 1918 in Lansing on May 28th and 29th. The program 
was patriotic in character. 

Francis Asbury Sampson, who for many years was Secretary of 
the State Historical Society of Missouri at Columbia, died on Feb- 
ruary 4, 1918, at the age of seventy-six. Mr. Sampson rendered a 
great service to students of history by his work as a collector of 
materials relating to Missouri, and by his numerous writings on 
historical subjects. 

A War History Commission, of which Dr. Milo M. Quaife, Super- 
intendent of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, is a mem- 
ber, has been appointed in Wisconsin to have general supervision 
of the collection of materials relative to that State's participation 
in the Great War. Committees have been appointed and organized 
in nearly every county to cooperate in this movement. 

On Thursday, June 20th, the Historical Societ}^ of Marshall 
County unveiled a monument to the Pottawattamie Chief, Chem- 
euse, better known as Johnny Green, who for many years made his 
home near Marshalltown on the grounds now occupied by the Sol- 
diers' Home. His friendliness and many services to the settlers 
gained for him the title of "the friend of the white man", and it is 
very fitting that his memory should be honored by a monument 
marking the place of his burial on a bluff overlooking the Iowa 



The Madison County Historical Society held its fifteenth annual 
meeting at Winterset on April 30th. One of the interesting fea- 
tures of the meeting was the reading of a paper, written by Henry 
C. Wallace, telling of the life of his father, the late Henry Wallace, 
in Madison County. The following officers were elected for the 
coming year: Herman Mueller, president; John Anderson, vice 
president; E. R. Zeller, secretary and treasurer; and Blair Wolf, 
W. W. Gentry, Henry Hawk, and Ed. Hyder, members of the 
executive committee. 

On May 11th occurred the formal dedication of the splendid new 
building of the Minnesota Historical Society at St. Paul. In the 
afternoon there were brief addresses by Ralph Wheelock, Chairman 
of the Minnesota State Board of Control ; J. A. A. Burnquist, Gov- 
ernor of Minnesota; Gideon S. Ives, President of the Minnesota 
Historical Society; Benjamin P. Shambaugh, Superintendent of 
The State Historical Society of Iowa; Warren Upham, Archaeolo- 
gist and former Secretary of the Minnesota Historical Society ; and 
Solon J. Buck, Superintendent of the Minnesota Historical Society. 
At six o'clock a supper was tendered to the delegates and invited 
guests of the Society. Then in the evening the dedicatory address 
on Middle Western Pioneer Democracy was delivered by Frederick 
J. Turner of Harvard University. It was very fitting that these 
exercises took place on the sixtieth anniversary of the admission of 
Minnesota into the Union. 


The eleventh annual meeting of the Mississippi Valley Historical 
Association was held in St. Paul on May 9-11, 1918, in connection 
with the dedication of the new building of the Minnesota Historical 
Society. The presidential address, by St. George L. Sioussat, was 
on the subject of Andrew Johnson and the Homestead Bill. Among 
the many interesting papers on the program were the following: 
An Aboriginal Map of the Turtle Mountain Area, by 0. G. Libby ; 
Six Constitutions of the Far Northwest, by John D. Hicks ; Popular 
Sovereignty and the Colonization of Kansas from 1854 to 1860 , by 


William 0. Lynch; Missouri in the Kansas Struggle, by Mary J. 
Klem; Some Relations of the Upper Mississippi Valley with Lake 
Superior in the Civil War Period, by Lester B. Shippee ; The TJrdted 
States Factory System for Trading with the Indians, by Royal B. 
Way; The Collapse of the Steamboat Traffic Upon the Mississippi: 
An Inquiry into Causes, by Paul W. Brown; The Evolution of Mon- 
tana Agriculture in its Early Period, by M. L. Wilson; and The 
History of the Early Range Industry of the Upper Missouri Valley, 
by Lewis F. Crawford. 

Numerous hospitalities, in the form of receptions, luncheons, 
smokers, and an automobile tour furnished abundant opportunity 
for the making of acquaintances and the interchange of ideas. At 
the business meeting Professor Harlow M. Lindley of Earlham Col- 
lege in Indiana was elected president for the coming year. Mrs. 
Clarence S. Paine was reelected secretary-treasurer. 


Miss Ruth A. Gallaher, Library Research Associate in The State 
Historical Society of Iowa, received the degree of Doctor of Philos- 
ophy at the State University of Iowa in June. The Society now 
has in press a volume by Dr. Gallaher on The History of the Legal 
and Political Status of Women in Iowa, 

On May 11, 1918, Mr. B. F. Osborn of Rippey, Iowa, celebrated 
the completion of forty years of continuous activity as a druggist 
at that place. Mr. Osborn has for many years been a member of 
The State Historical Society of Iowa, and has recently been en- 
rolled as a life member. i 

Two volumes have been distributed by the Society during the 
past three months, namely: Old Fort Snelling, 1819-1858, by 
Marcus L. Hansen ; and a History of Economic Legislation in Iowa, 
by Ivan L. Pollock. The former is a book of two hundred and sev- 
enty pages, while the latter contains nearly four hundred pages. 

Among the former members of the staff of The State Historical 
Society of Iowa who are now in the military service of the country 
are John C. Parish, Jacob Van der Zee, Clifford Powell, Odis K. 



Patton, Ivan L. Pollock, Cyril B. Upham, Lewis H. Brown, Carroll 
B. Martin, Earl S. Fullbrook, John M. Pfiffner, and Marcus L. 

Three pamphlets in the series entitled Iowa and War which were 
issued by the Society in April, May, and June, respectively, are: 
Border Defeiise in Iowa During the Civil War, by Dan Elbert 
Clark; The Spirit Lake Massacre, by Dan Elbert Clark; and The 
Mexican War, by Cyril B. Upham. 

Professor Louis B. Schmidt of the Iowa State College of Agri- 
culture and Mechanic Arts at Ames spent the latter part of June 
and the first week in July in Iowa City, doing research work under 
the direction of the Society along the line of the history of agri- 
culture in Iowa during the Civil War. 

The following persons have recently been elected to membership 
in the Society: Hon. E, H. Hoyt, Des Moines, Iowa; Mr. James E. 
Baldwin, Florin, California; Mr. H. E. Button, Alden, Iowa; Mr. 
John Clark, Cleveland, Ohio; Rev. C S. Lackland, West Union, 
Iowa ; and Mr. N. R. Whitney, Iowa City, Iowa. 

The Society has recently sent out to the public libraries and local 
historical societies of Iowa a Bulletin of Information containing de- 
tailed suggestions relative to the Collection and Preservation of the 
Materials of War History: A Patriotic Service for Public Libraries, 
Local Historical Societies, and Local Historians. There is a general 
discussion of the subject by Benj. P. Shambaugh; and an enumera- 
tion of the various classes of materials for war history which should 
be preserved, compiled by Ruth A. Gallaher. 


Henry Adams, one of the best known and distingnislied of Amer- 
ican historians, died on March 27th. He was born in 1838. 

Among the recent accessions of the manuscripts division of the 
Library of Congress is the diary of a journey from Dakota across 
the Rocky Mountains made in 1853 by John Evans. 

Hubert Howe Bancroft, the foremost historian of the Pacific 
Coast States, died near San Francisco on March 2, 1918, at the age 
of eighty-six. 

The twenty-fourth annual meeting of the Iowa State Bar Asso- 
ciation was held in Des Moines on June 27th and 28th. 

On March 13, 1918, at Los Angeles occurred the death of William 
Wick Cotton, one of the most prominent lawyers of the State of 
Oregon. Mr. Cotton was the son of Aylett R. Cotton and was born 
at Lyons, Iowa, in 1859. He went to Oregon when thirty years of 

William H. Fahey of Perry, who was a District Judge in the 
Fifth Judicial District from 1911 to the time of his death, died on 
May 15th. He was born in Des Moines on July 31, 1872. 

The thirty-second annual convention of the Iowa Bankers' Asso- 
ciation was held on June 19th and 20th at Dubuque. 

On May 5th occurred the death of W. W. Moore of Des Moines. 
Mr. Moore had been a continuous resident of that city for seventy- 
one years, or since 1847, when he reached the future capital of the 
State with only fifteen cents to his name. He is perhaps best known 
as the builder and owner of Moore's Hall, which was the scene of 
some of the most prominent theatrical and political events in the 
history of Des Moines. 




A newspaper item states that at the next session of the General 
Assembly of Iowa an effort will be made to secure pensions for the 
surviving members of Captain Henry B. Martin's company of 
Frontier Guards, which was stationed in northwestern Iowa during 
1858 and 1859 for the purpose of protecting the settlers against 
depredations by the Indians. 

Mrs. Tacitus Hussey, who has been a resident of Des Moines for 
sixty-one years, died on May 19th. She was born in New York 
State in 1836. 

Anson D. Bicknell, who for forty-one years has been one of the 
leading citizens of Humboldt, Iowa, died at his home in that city on 
April 20th. Mr. Bicknell served in the lower house of the Eight- 
eenth General Assembly of Iowa, and was twice mayor of the city 
of Humboldt. He was born in Westmoreland, New York, in 1836. 

A memorial fountain in honor of the late Mrs. Ellen C. Colby is 
to be placed in Taft 's Park at Humboldt, Iowa. 

Alfred N. Hobson of West Union, who has been a District Judge 
of the Thirteenth Judicial District for many years, died on April 
11th, at the age of seventy years. 

The annual picnic of the Old Settlers' Association of Mills, Pot- 
tawattamie, and Fremont counties was held at Tabor on July 4th. 

Stephen Harris Taft, the founder both of the city of Humboldt, 
Iowa, and of Humboldt College, died in California on April 22nd, 
at the age of ninety-two. It was in 1862 that he came to Iowa and 
laid out the town which was later called Humboldt. 

The history and literature section of the Ames Woman's Club, of 
which Mrs. L. B. Schmidt is chairman, is taking a great interest in 
the collection and preservation of materials relating to the history 
of Story County. Questionnaires have been sent out to a large 
number of the early settlers of the county in the effort to locate 
such materials and learn whether the possessor of such materials 
would be willing to donate or deposit them in some public deposi- 
tory within the county. 


"William E. Fuller of West Union died in Washington, D. C, on 
April 23rd at the age of seventy-two. Mr. Fuller received his edu- 
cation at Upper Iowa University and at the State University of 
Iowa. He was a representative in the Sixteenth General Assembly 
of Iowa, and was Congressman from the Fourth District of this 
State from 1885 to 1889. From 1901 to 1908 he was Assistant 
Attorney General of the United States. 

Periodically the claim is made that a certain person was the first 
white child born in Iowa. It has recently been asserted that this 
distinction belonged to Mrs. Emily Morgan Hackett, who passed 
away late in May at Madison, Wisconsin. She was born in Du- 
buque County on October 16, 1834. 

James S. Clarkson, one of the best known and most influential 
newspaper editors in Iowa history, died in Newark, New Jersey, on 
May 31st. From 1869 to 1891 he was editor of the Des Moines 
Register and in that capacity achieved a national reputation. He 
removed to New York in 1891. From 1902 to 1910 he was Surveyor 
of Customs in New York City, and for many years he has been a 
member of the national executive committee of the Republican 
party. He was born on May 17, 1842, in Brookville, Indiana. 


Dan Elbeet Clakk, Associate Editor in The State His- 
torical Society of Iowa. (See The Iowa Journal of History 
AND Politics for April, 1915, p. 307.) 

W. W. Gist, Professor of English in the Iowa State Teach- 
ers College since 1900. 

Louis Bernakd Schmidt, Associate Professor of History in 
the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts. 
(See The Iowa Journal of History and Politics for October, 
1912, p. 593.) 



IOWA Journal 

H i storj^arvd Politics 


Published Quarterly by 


Iowe». City Iowa. 

filtered December 26 1902 at Iowa City lo^ra as second-class matter ander act of Coiigress of July Iti 

EDIT on 

Associate Editor, DAN E. CLARK 

Vol XVI OCTOBER 1918 No. 4 


Social Woi-k at Camp Dodge . Fred E. Haynes 471 

Some Publications 548 

Western Americana . . , . , . . 553 

lowana , . . . , . , , 555 

Historical Societies . . . . . . 563 

Notes and Comment . 572 

Contributor . 575 

Index . 577 

Copyright 1018 by TJie Si(ite Historical , Society of Iowa 

7: -r — — , ; \ — ■ t~—, ; — ... in n ■■hi 


Published Quaeteelt 

SuBS' I ' ; Peiob: $2.00 Single NuMBBft: 50 CiBNTS 

Address all Communications to 
')>!j. vj ATE Historical SociKtT Iowa CiTt Iowa 



VOL. XVI — 31 


[In this monograph the author undertakes to describe social work as it has 
developed in military training camps in the United States, using Camp Dodge 
as a concrete expression of such work. The study was made during the spring 
and summer of 1918, and covers the period during which the Eighty-eighth 
Division of the National Army was in training at Camp Dodge. Since the 
departure of that division for overseas service a number of changes have been 
made in the camp itself and in the organization of the social work. Besides 
numerous visits to Camp Dodge the author has made use of all available 
sources of information. It is possible that some errors of description or state- 
ment may have found lodgment in these pages, due partly to the difficulty of 
presenting statically a rapidly developing organization. — Editor.] 



The location of a training camp for men from the States 
of Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, and South Dakota pro- 
voked considerable rivalry among the competing cities — 
the contest finally narrowing down to Fort Snelling, Minne- 
sota, and what has come to be known as Camp Dodge, near 
Des Moines, Iowa. So close was the contest that it was 
finally settled by an appeal to Secretary of War Baker, who 
favored the Des Moines location after the army board 
appointed for the purpose had decided for the Minnesota 
point. Undoubtedly the fact that Camp Dodge was located 
near a saloonless city and at the center of a prohibition 
State influenced the decision of Secretary Baker. 

This final settlement of the location at Camp Dodge was 
made on June 27, 1917. A general cantonment fund of 
$50,000 was promptly raised in Des Moines to aid in meet- 
ing all the requirements of the Federal government. To a 
combination of Des Moines contractors and builders was 
awarded the contract for the construction of the cantonment 


— ^^the only case reported in wMcli the gigantic building 
contract was entrusted to local builders. ' ' The building of 
the camp was completed in the main between July 5th and 
September 30, 1917. 

^^In the early summer of 1917'', in the words of Johnson 
Brigham, ^Visitors at the Hyperion Clubhouse on the 
height overlooking Camp Dodge, twelve miles north of Des 
Moines, looking down from the porch upon the valley to the 
west and north, saw only a few buildings left over from the 
state encampment of 1916. Extending on beyond for miles 
lay the beautiful valley of the Des Moines River with its 
dotted furrows of corn, its drill-lines of grain and the 
emerald-green of grass with its brown-black setting of 
earth. In the November following, from the same viewpoint 
the scene had changed as if by magic, the transformation 
rivaling the miracles of The Thousand and One Nights, 
There, to the west and northwest, had sprung up a city with 
nearly two thousand buildings, all evidently designed by 
the same mind and hand, — rows on rows of barracks, here 
and there a mess-house with its kitchen ; eight green-painted 
buildings and one large auditorium marking the well- 
directed efforts of the Young Men's Christian Association 
to ameliorate the moral and mental condition of thousands 
of young men, many if not most of them for the first time 
separated from the comforts and delights of home. Broth- 
ering up to the central auditorium of the Y. M. C. A. was 
the recreation center of the Knights of Columbus. To the 
west was the building erected by the Lutherans. Across the 
street was the huge auditorium erected by the government 
for recreation purposes. To the west of this was the central 
library building, erected by the American Library Associ- 
ation in response to the urgent needs of the war department. 
Jews and Gentiles, Catholics and Protestants, all came 
together in this most substantial of dream cities, and, with 



not a trace of the old lines of cleavage, each factor recog- 
nizing the greatness of the problem, cooperating with all 
the rest in brave endeavor to solve it. There, too, was the 
staff hospital covering forty acres. There were stables for 
thousands of horses and mnles, and hundreds of other 
buildings not easily identified at a distance. 

^^For three miles or more this city of men extended north 
and south with its 1,872 buildings, with its miles of smoothly 
paved streets over which, of a Sunday, two almost con- 
tinuous lines of automobiles could be seen creeping along 
in opposite directions. The main avenue, on every Sunday 
afternoon, was lined with soldiers off duty and their rela- 
tives and friends and curious visitors strolling from one 
point of interest to another. The open windows of the 
barracks were alive with khaki-clad ^ boys' sunning them- 
selves and exchanging comments on the moving picture 
before them. In the open spaces were groups of athletic 
youths practicing football kicks and passes for future 
games. Sounds of vocal and instrumental music came from 
the Y. M. C. A. buildings, and exhilirating shouts of laugh- 
ter rose from groups of men assembled on the cross-roads 
and in the miniature parks. 

^^The visitor went away from the scene impressed not 
only with the bigness and substantial nature of the canton- 
ment, but also with the patriotic response of the American 
people to the draft upon their youths and young men, and 
the splendid material for future armies resulting from the 
government's experiment in ^selective conscription'.'' 

Late in August, 1917, Qeneral Edward H. Plummer was 
appointed commanding officer of the Eighty-eighth Divi- 
sion of the National Army and placed in charge of the 
Thirteenth Divisional Cantonment at Camp Dodge. Enter- 
ing immediately upon his duties, General Plummer ex- 
pressed himself as well pleased with the progress made in 


the construction and equipping of the camp, ^^One of Ms 
first questions was : ^ What has been done for the entertain- 
ment of the men?' This was followed by other inquiries 
showing" a keen interest in his charge, as for example : ^ Are 
the shower-baths ready for themV .... He early 
gave the public this gratifying assurance: ^No mother need 
fear that her son will be accorded anything but the best of 
treatment. ' 

General Plummer strongly commended the work of the 
War Recreation Board at the camp and in the city. In a 
note to Secretary R. B. Patin, late in December, he said : 

*It is only a flash of reasoning to realize that what is 
being done for our recruits by the War Recreation Board 
is an inestimable blessing to individuals and a method of 
almost equal value from a patriotic standpoint, practically 
saving to the colors, to the civilized world, thousands of men 
in this time of need'.*'^ 

These remarks of General Plummer and his references to 
the welfare of the men call attention to a phase of the train- 
ing of the new American armies which is unique in the 
emphasis placed upon the human welfare environment of 
the soldiers. In what President Robert A. Woods of the 
National Conference of Social Work so finely described as 
The Regimentation of the Free, ^Hhe truth has been re- 
discovered and far more broadly applied, which was first 
fully brought to light by Florence Nightingale in the 
Crimean War, that ^the cause of humanity is identified with 
the strength of armies'.''^ 

As the result of his long and effective service with the 
Sanitary Commission during the Civil War, Frederick Law 
Olmsted gave as his opinion that the two things that did 

1 Brigham's Iowa: Its History and Its Foremost Citizens (Home and School 
Edition), Vol. II, pp. 753-761. 

2 Woods 's The Ecgimentation of the Free in The Survey, Vol. XL, p. 395. 



most to keep the soldiers well were music and letters from 
home.^ A generation of social work has supplemented Civil 
War experience and has given a chance for experimentation 
and for the testing of many methods of dealing with social 
relations. During the World War constructive social work- 
ers have been given an opportunity on a vast scale to shoAV 
the value of their efforts. 



Social workers are largely responsible for the Commis- 
sions on Training Camp Activities, appointed by Secretaries 
Baker and Daniels, for the supervision of social and recre- 
ational work in the army and navy. The men in the na- 
tional service have left their families, homes and friends, 
their clubs, churches and college gatherings, their dances, 
libraries, athletic fields, theatres and movies — all the 
normal social relationships to which they have been accus- 
tomed — and have entered a strange new life in which 
everything is subordinated to the need of creating an effi- 
cient fighting force. The task of these commissions, there- 
fore, is to reestablish the old social ties as far as possible, 
and to furnish a substitute for the recreational and social 
opportunities of home communities. They must socialize 
in the broadest sense the environment of military camps 
and training stations.^ 

The Commission on Training Camp Activities of the War 
Department held its first meeting on April 26, 1917, and the 
Navy Commission on July 26th of the same year. Raymond 
B. Fosdick was made chairman of both commissions which 
are sometimes referred to as the Fosdick Commissions". 

3 Lee's The Training Camp Commissions in The Survey, Vol. XXXIX, p. 3. 

4 Commission on Training Camp Activities, published at Washington, D. C, 
pp. 3, 4. 


Mr. Fosdick was sent to the Mexican border by Secretary 
Baker in the summer of 1916 to investigate conditions dur- 
ing the mobilization of the National Guard in connection 
with the threatening state of affairs resulting from revo- 
lutionary disturbances in Mexico. His report emphasized 
the need of social and recreational work for men in the 
army. Other well-known members of these commissions are 
Joseph Lee, President of the Playground and Eecreation 
Association of America, John E. Mott of the Young Men's 
Christian Association, Charles P. Neill, formerly Commis- 
sioner of Labor of the United States, and the famous foot- 
ball players, Walter Camp and Malcolm L. McBride.^ 

The work of these commissions is divided mainly into 
three parts. One part is to exclude vice and drink from the 
vicinity of each camp and training station. This work has 
been in charge of Mr. Fosdick. 

But the negative side is not the biggest nor the most 
important aspect of this social work at the camps. It is 
not enough that the government should barely avoid the 
wholesale propagation .... of physical disease and 
moral deterioration with penalties to be collected from the 
wives and children of such of them as may survive. Amer- 
ica asks something more than that. The establishment of 
these training camps represents a great educational enter- 
prise. These are our national universities for war pur- 
poses, schools to which the flower of American youth is 
being sent. It is our business to see that these men are 
turned out stronger in every sense — more fit morally, 
mentally and physically, than they have ever been in their 
lives. Unless that is accomplished it will have to be said 
of America, as of every other nation that has encountered 
the problem of the training camp, that we also have failed 
in its solution." 

5 Allen and Fosdick 's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 3-7. 



The third great branch of the work of these commissions 

consists of the mobilization of the social resources in the 
neighboring communities so as to be of the greatest pos- 
sible benefit to the officers and men.'^ This is the least 
visible, but in many respects the most interesting and most 
difficult part of the work. The educational and recreational 
activities have a certain definiteness, but to make the com- 
munities adjacent to the camps suitable places for the men 
in their leisure time is a great undertaking. It means 
social construction and reconstruction in comparison with 
which the actual material establishment of the cantonments 
is a relatively simple and definite proposition.^ 

A business man, who considers himself practical-minded, 
asked what place has a theatre in a training camp ? What 
is the use of teaching men to sing and why bother with 
men's morals? The answer to the questions is to be found 
in the fact that already some of the directors of large 
industries ^Hhat are turning out munitions of war have 
asked the Commissions to take over their social problems 
in the same manner as they are handling those of the army 
and navy. They see in the work a value to be measured in 
dollars and cents.'' 

Behind all the social work is the **one big purpose to win 
the war. It will be won by man-power and manhood, and 
the activities of the Commissions are directed towards their 
cultivation. ... To make the men fit for fighting, and 
after, to bring them back from war as fine and as clean as 
they went, is just plain efficiency."^ 

The three great tasks of the Fosdick commissions cover 
two great fields of activity — one inside the camps and the 
other outside. Except where necessary they have not cre- 

6 Lee's The Training Camp Commissions in The Survey, Vol. XXXIX, pp. 
4, 5. 

7 Allen and Fosdick 's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 15-17. 


ated any new macMnery, but have made use of agencies 
already in existence. A large share of the club life and 
entertainment inside the camps has been directed by the 
Young Men's Christian Association and the Knights of 
Columbus. The American Library Association has pro- 
vided an adequate supply of- books and reading facilities. 
The organization of the adjacent communities has been 
delegated to the Playground and Eecreation Association of 
America, the Travelers ' Aid Society, and the Young Wom- 
en 's Christian Association. Every organization already at 
work and able to give assistance has been brought in to help 
in its special field. The social worker has been given a 
chance on a large scale to show the value of his work. 



The idea of club life in army and navy camps seems 
somewhat strange if not revolutionary; but this is one of 
the significant things for which the new government policy 
has provided. On Wednesday and Saturday afternoons 
the routine of military training is sometimes broken, and 
Sundays are of course regular holidays. Unless assigned 
to some special duty the fighting man is free after 5:30 
P. M. until taps. It is a fact that leisure is the bugbear of 
the man away from home : successful traveling men say that 
their work would be one hundred per cent congenial if it 
were not for Sundays. This problem of occupation and 
activity during leisure time for the soldier and sailor is met 
in the cantonments and training stations by the Young 
Men's Christian Association and by the Knights of Co- 


The Young Men's Christian Association was given recog- 
nition as one of the agencies for furnishing recreational 


facilities because its experience on the Mexican border in 
1916, in the military and prison camps of Europe during 
the present World War, and in Manchuria during the Eusso- 
Japanese War of 1904 to 1905 has fitted it to deal with such 
problems. In each of the National Army cantonments there 
are from nine to fourteen buildings, and usually at least 
six in National Guard camps. In each of the National 
Army cantonments these buildings include an auditorium 
seating three thousand. 

^'Over one hundred and fifty tents, 40 x 80 feet, and four 
hundred special outfits or equipments for Association pur- 
poses also have been provided. Each outfit includes, among 
other things, a piano, motion picture machine, phonograph, 
office supplies, postcards, pens, ink, pencils, stationery, 
reading matter, etc. — all free. ' ' 

According to the latest information there are 178 army 
and navy stations at which the Young Men's Christian 
Association operates in nearly 600 buildings. At the small- 
est of these places there is only one secretary, while at the 
largest there are fourteen buildings each with a crew of 
secretaries. It must be remembered that the population of 
the cantonments is that of fair-sized cities — in some cases 
50,000, and in many from 25,000 to 35,000. Adequate ser- 
vice requires that the buildings shall be distributed so as to 
be easy of access ; they must be efficiently managed and the 
secretaries must be fitted to deal with the many different 
types, racial and personal, of the men who meet on the 
common ground for recreation, entertainment, and social 
enjoyment. The spirit that pervades these buildings and 
the smoothness with which they are administered is re- 
markable and can only result from a sympathetic under- 
standing of men. 

A typical bungalow usually contains a big fireplace, where 
on cold days a big log fire crackles cheerfully. The rocking- 


chairs in the chimney corners are almost always occupied 
by men with books and magazines, and there is a pleasant 
aroma of tobacco burning in many pipes. Near the center 
of the room a victrola is pouring forth, perhaps some pop- 
ular music, or it may be a grand opera selection. At the 
desks near the windows there are men writing letters. **It 
is estimated that more than a million letters a day are 
written by the soldiers and sailors on the stationery that is 
furnished free by the Y. M. C. A. . . . They get their 
stamps from one of the secretaries behind the desk, and 
mail their letters with him. From the same desk they buy 
money-orders, over three quarters of a million dollars a 
month in the aggregate. ' ' 

Part of the equipment of many of the buildings is a small 
auditorium where amateur vaudeville entertainments, 
Bible classes, movie shows, basketball games, song services 
and sparring matches'' are conducted. Besides these 
smaller halls there are, in the larger camps, auditoriums 
with a seating capacity of from 2000 to 3000 people. It is 
the central place for the big Young Men's Christian Asso- 
ciation events and is in addition to the ^'Liberty Theatres" 
built by the commissions. Here are held the entertainments, 
lectures, and other events that draw men from all parts of 
the camp. During January, 1918, the total attendance at 
these events in all the camps was 3,253,838. With but few 
exceptions no admission is charged.^ Indeed, the camp 
auditorium is the largest single consumer of moving-picture 
films in the country, operating over 500 machines in the 
cantonments of the United States, running from one to six 
nights a week, and using from 4,000,000 to 5,000,000 feet of 
film during that time. 

s Commission on Training Camp Activities, pp. 7-9; Allen and Fosdick's 
Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 24-32. 




Similar activities are carried on by the Knights of Co- 
lumbus, which, like the Young Men's Christian Association, 
served the soldiers along social lines on the Mexican border 
in 1916. One organization represents roughly sixty per 
cent of the army, while the other represents about thirty- 
five per cent. These agencies, however, hold no meetings to 
which all the troops in the camps are not invited regardless 
of religious or other preferences. The Knights of Colum- 
bus now have about 150 buildings in operation in American 
camps and a fifth more under way or authorized. There 
are about 500 secretaries in service and about 65 volunteer 
chaplains. The cost of the welfare work of this organiza- 
tion thus far amounts to about $7,000,000.^ 


The Jewish Welfare Board has erected fewer buildings 
in the camps, but it provides social, educational, and reli- 
gious programs. It looks after about 75,000 men of Jewish 
faith and has sent 150 workers to the different camps. 
There is the closest cooperation with the Young Men's 
Christian Association and the Knights of Columbus. More 
than one hundred local branches have been organized in 
different places to interest Jewish people in the work and 
to obtain the necessary funds. 

Personal service forms a large part of the work of these 
three organizations. They are effectively bridging the gulf 
between the soldiers and their environment. These camp 
clubs are not closed most of the time, as are the churches at 
home. No one needs to dress up to enter them. The soldier 
writes his letters, plays his games, and sees a movie in the 
same place in which he listens to a sermon, and sings the 

9 The Sioux City Journal, July 6, 1918 ; Association Men, Vol. XLIII, p. 196. 


hymns lie learned in Ms cMldhood. At home the church 
never fitted into daily life in any such way. No one ever 
thought of dropping in ^ ^ to smoke and chat, to write a letter 
to his sweetheart, to laugh at Charlie Chaplin, to see a 
couple of local champions spar for the honors of the ring." 
These organizations supplement the work of the chaplains ; 
they show that '^organized friendship'' is worth while be- 
cause it makes better fighters. 


During the Civil War no systematic provision was made 
for books for the use of the army and navy. A few books 
were sent to the hospitals in and around Washington and 
in a few northern cities, but in the main the men depended 
almost entirely on Harper's and Frank Leslie's Weekly. 
The Connecticut regiments were fortunate exceptions, since 
libraries were a part of the regimental equipment from that 
State. These libraries were placed in strong portable cases 
with a written catalogue and proper regimental labels. 
They were in charge of Professor Francis Wayland and 
were on a great variety of subjects and of good quality. 

The demands of the newer methods of warfare are much 
more exacting. Books upon technical subjects must be 
within the reach of the soldier: they are necessary for 
training as well as to occupy leisure moments. As Mr. 
Fosdick tells us, this war is "a modern science which the 
men must learn by studious application to the problems of 
drill and trench. They acquire the habit of study, of appli- 
cation, in the training camp of to-day.'' Normal life can 
not be provided for soldiers and sailors in training without 
arrangements for the adequate distribution of good reading 
matter. Upon the entrance of the United States into the 
war, the American Library Association appointed a War 

10 The Sioux City Journal, July 5, 1918; Odell's The New Spirit of the New 
Army, p. 23. 



Service Committee which made its first report in June, 
1917. When these plans became known the Commission on 
Training Camp Activities invited the Association to assume 
responsibility for providing library facilities in the camps. 

The Secretary of War appointed ten men and women of 
national reputation as a library war council. It was decided 
to raise by private subscription a million dollars with which 
to carry on the work. The financial campaign resulted in 
raising the amount asked for and half as much again. A 
campaign for books, conducted at the same time, brought in 
over 200,000 volumes for immediate use. 

It was planned to purchase books of a serious character, 
since it was thought that fiction and books of the lighter 
sort would be largely supplied by gift through the book 
campaign — which was to be a continuous one for the dura- 
tion of the war. The Carnegie corporation gave the money 
for thirty-two camp libraries, and an anonymous donor 
built the building at the Great Lakes Naval Training Sta- 
tion. Each library cost $10,000. 

In October, 1917, Dr. Herbert Putnam, Librarian of Con- 
gress, became general director of the library war service 
with headquarters in the Congressional Library at Wash- 
ington. Here every effort is made to supply the needs of 
the various camps, to get the greatest result at a minimum 
of expense, and to avoid unnecessary complications in 
classification and cataloging. There is ordinarily no cata- 
logue of fiction; and non-fiction, which represents the 
expenditure of considerable money, is only roughly classi- 
fied. The charging system is so simple that the men them- 
selves can charge the books they take out. The emphasis is 
upon circulation and use of books rather than upon exact 
classification and security from loss. 

The library buildings are plain wooden structures built 
after a plan designed by E. L. Tilton, a well-known library 


architect who contributed his services. Although the plan 
called for a building 120 by 40 feet, the length of the struc- 
ture was in some cases reduced to 93 feet. The library 
buildings are located near the center of the camps and near 
the transportation lines. The interior consists of one large 
room with two bedrooms at one end. There are open 
shelves for about 10,000 volumes, and tables and chairs are 
provided for about 200 readers. The first library building 
to be opened was at Camp Lewis, Washington, on Novem- 
ber 28th; by the end of December, 1917, all but one of the 
structures were completed. Many obstacles were met in 
erecting these buildings: wages and prices for materials 
had greatly increased, freight was seriously congested, and 
contractors and laborers were leaving the camps after the 
completion of their work. Much of the equipment in these 
libraries will be of service after the war in the establish- 
ment of new public libraries. 

Besides the central library in each camp there are 
branches at the Young Men's Christian Association and 
Knights of Columbus huts, in the post exchanges, and at the 
base hospital. At these places soldiers get books at any 
hour of the day or evening, and the honor system'' is 
used under which books can be charged by leaving a memo- 
randum on the book-card. In addition to the branches, 
which number from eight to twenty in each camp, and where 
from 500 to 1500 books are placed, library deposit stations 
containing from 50 to 100 books are established in the bar- 
racks and mess rooms. Sometimes there will be a hundred 
or more of these stations in a camp. 

Some of the librarians are volunteers, while others are 
paid a small salary in addition to subsistence. A paid 
assistant is also provided with subsistence. The total cost, 
including janitor service and the expenses of local volun- 
teers, amounts to about $250 a month for each camp library 


— about $100,000 a year for this part of the work. Each 
camp library is supplied with a low-priced automobile with 
delivery box attached for the distribution of books within 
the camp. 

The question is frequently asked, ^^What do the men 
readf Of course fiction holds the first place because one 
of the major purposes of the libraries is to tide over un- 
occupied time and to furnish pleasant and wholesome re- 
laxation. But next to fiction come books of pure and 
applied science. Men are facing unaccustomed tasks and 
they do a great amount of reading and study to fit them- 
selves for their new duties. Books on machinery, gasoline 
engines, aeroplanes, electricity, and chemistry are in con- 
stant demand. The men realize that they are soon to meet 
serious problems upon the solution of which their own 
future and that of their country depends. Army life fur- 
nishes a tremendous incentive to study, which accounts for 
the great enthusiasm for reading that is displayed in the 
use of the library facilities. 

There are in the camps many foreign-speaking men who 
must learn to understand, read, and give orders in English ; 
and there are others, entirely illiterate, who must be taught 
to read and write. Still others have never had the privi- 
lege of access to books and must be taught how to use them. 
At the other extreme are 45,000 students from 576 colleges. 
In Camp Devens in Massachusetts there were 695 college 
men from 27 New England institutions, who foimd them- 
selves messmates of former mill operatives from the textile 
cities of New England. These men have exerted a strong 
influence upon each other. The presence of so many college 
men means a call for kinds of books not needed by men who 
have had less opportunity for education. There is a level- 
ing up rather than the generally accepted theory of a level- 
ing downward in the army camp. The far-reaching 

VOL. XVI — 32 


importance of camp libraries can hardly be exaggerated. 

Mr. Burton E. Stevenson, the novelist who is librarian at 
Camp Sherman, Ohio, had ^^some very plausible theories 
about the kinds of books the men would want ; but he soon 
discarded them. We have had requests here for every sort 
of book, from some books by Gene Stratton Porter to Bos- 
well's 'Life of Johnson' and Bergson's 'Creative Evolu- 
tion'. We have had requests for Ibsen's plays; for books 
on sewage disposal; and so many requests for 'A Message 
to Garcia' that I had a supply mimeographed. In one 
building there were so many requests for books on religion 
and ethics that we set up a small reference collection. 
Broadly speaking, of course, most of the men read fiction; 
exciting, red-blooded fiction-detective stories, adventure 
stories, and so on. But there is also a steady demand for 
Conrad, and Wells, and Hardy, and Meredith. Poetry is 
also in demand, and good books of travel go well. . . » 
We don 't care for unattractive, cheap editions, with yellow, 
muddy paper and flimsy binding. We want attractive 
books — nice, clean copies of good editions — and the more 
of these we get the better service we can give the men." 

Finally, the purpose of the camp library work, like that 
of all the affiliated organizations, is ''to help win the war, 
and to help in the great work of reconstruction after the 
war. . . . The camp libraries contribute their share 
to both these ends. They help to keep the man more fit 
physically, mentally and spiritually, and prepare such as 
shall be spared for greater usefulness after the war. Good 
reading has helped to keep many a soldier up to his highest 
level ; it has aided in the recovery of many a wounded man. 
It has helped to keep him cheerful, and to send him back to 
the firing line with renewed determination to win or die 
bravely in the attempt. "^^ 

11 Koch's War Service of the American Library Association, pp. 5-26; 
Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 84-99. 



Singing in the army has a distinct military value. Em- 
phasis is not laid upon it in military textbooks ; but a good 
deal is said about morale and esprit de corps, upon both of 
which singing has a great influence. A hundred years ago 
when American shipping was found on every sea, the sailors 
sang their chanties as they pulled on the ropes or tugged at 
the windlass. The chanties were recognized as an aid to 
man power. Often the words were * ^ sentimental or dra- 
matic .... as ungodly as the men who sang them — 
but they smacked of the salt sea, they promoted good feel- 
ing among the crew, and they were an energizing influ- 
ence.'' It is natural for men to sing when they come 
together ; for singing is a means of self-expression and it is 
also relaxation and stimulation. If singing in the army 
and navy needs any other justification than its inspirational 
significance, it is only necessary to mention its physical 

In the opinion of Major-General Leonard Wood, **it is 
just as essential that the soldiers should know how to sing 
as that they should carry rifles and learn how to shoot them. 
Singing is one of the things they all should learn. It sounds 
odd to the ordinary person when you tell him every soldier 
should be a singer, because the layman cannot reconcile 
singing with killing. But when you know these boys as I 
know them, you will realize how much it means to them to 
sing. There isn't anything in the world, even letters from 
home, that will raise a soldier's spirits like a good, catchy 
marching-tune. ' ' 

Another officer is quoted as saying: ^^It is monotony that 
kills the men off. A man gets tired of drill, tired of doing 
the same thing in barracks, even tired of getting shot at. 
We need company leaders to teach the men new songs ; we 
need instructors to show the men how to get up their own 


minstrel shows and dramatic entertainments. Everything 
that can be devised by way of wholesome amusement to- 
ward breaking up the monotony is a direct help in making 
better soldiers and keeping the standards high. ' ' 

Singing has long been understood to be an aid to effi- 
ciency, but it remained for the Commissions on Training 
Camp Activities to develop it in the army and navy for that 
purpose. There was appointed a National Committee on 
Army and Navy Camp Music to supervise the work. Under 
its auspices a conference of song leaders was held to com- 
pile a collection of songs that would contain what the great- 
est number wanted to sing. The result was the little volume 
of Songs of the Soldiers and Sailors — the first song-book 
ever published by a government. For such a book the need 
was apparent, since without a collection of songs, soldiers 
and sailors from different parts of the country would not 
know the same songs when they came together. The book 
is on sale at the post exchanges in all the camps — at the 
price of five cents for soldiers and ten cents for civilians. 

Song leaders or coaches have been appointed by the com- 
missions in the various camps and cantonments. These 
men are civilians who are given the standing of commis- 
sioned officers. They get results chiefly through person- 
ality and by inspiring enthusiasm. One day a song leader 
on a trip through a camp noticed a squad of tired men 
pulling stumps. In his small car he carried a folding organ 
and some white oil charts on which were the words of the 
most popular songs. After a hurried consultation with the 
officer in charge, the song leader started the men singing. 
In a few minutes he had the men singing; and twenty min- 
utes later he left them yanking out stumps with renewed 
vigor. Different divisions of the army and navy men have 
regular times for singing under the direction of the leaders. 
Mass singing is valuable in filling in periods of waiting. 



The men sing on the march, in their barracks, and between 
acts at the Liberty Theatres. 

Less attention is paid to the matter of what the men sing 
than to the more important consideration that they sing. 
The greater part of the songs are not classical : sometimes 
they incline towards the ''rough-house", and yet when you 
hear them sing the ''Battle Hymn of the Eepublic", you 
feel no misgivings as to the sentiments of the singing fight- 
ers. These soldier songs have a swing and rhythm which 
appeal to everybody. I have seen a camp song leader get 
such a staid gathering as the National Conference of Social 
Work so interested in singing that they were unwilling to 
stop and take up the regular program. 

The songs range from the national anthem to ' ' Send Me 
a Curl." Among them are such favorites as "Carry Me 
Back to Old Virginny", "Silver Threads Among the Gold", 
"Dixie", and a few of the best-known hymns. We have a 
singing army and a singing army is a winning army.^^ 


Another thing that is being done inside the camps is the 
development of athletics. This work for the army is under 
the direction of Dr. Joseph E. Eaycroft, professor of 
hygiene in Princeton University; similarly, Walter Camp, 
the famous Yale football authority, is in charge of athletics 
in the navy. The government through the two commissions 
has been encouraging and directing athletics in more than 
thirty-five army camps and half as many naval stations. 

The organization and conduct of the work in each camp 
or station is delegated to men of experience, many of whom 
have been star athletes in their college days. These men 
were at first civilian aids on the staffs of the commanding 
officers, but later many of them were commissioned as 

12 Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 64-83; Commission on 
Training Camp Activities, pp. 15, 16. 


officers in tlie army. There is close cooperation between 
them and the athletic representatives of the Yonng Men's 
Christian Association and the Knights of Colnmbus who 
are working in the camps. Ultimately it is intended ^^that 
every company shall have an officer in charge of games and 
athletics — presumably a lieutenant — and a standardized 
box in its supply tent containing volley-ball, basket-ball and 
baseball outfits, a set of quoits", and some other similar 

Of course the primary purpose of all the athletics is to 
train the men to be better fighters, although incidentally 
there is recreational value in these activities. To state it 
differently it may be said that the aim of athletics in the 
army and navy is to make men fit to fight and to heep them 

Special emphasis is laid upon boxing because of its inti- 
mate connection with bayonet fighting. A committee, 
headed by James J. Corbett, has been appointed by the War 
Department commission to advise on this matter. Boxing 
instructors have been appointed in nearly every large camp, 
and they have trained groups of men to assist them. In 
many camps from two hundred to four hundred of these 
assistant instructors have been developed and are giving 
lessons. Frequent contests are held; and to standardize the 
instruction and to give the men a better idea of the work, 
moving pictures have been made to demonstrate the funda- 
mental principles of boxing and the elements of bayonet 
practice. Nearly every blow and position in boxing has its 
counterpart in bayoneting. Sometimes boxing lessons are 
given to a thousand men at one time by these moving pic- 
tures which are explained by a man on a high stand. 

Besides the better known sports — such as football, base- 
ball, and basket-ball — a great variety of games are en- 
gaged in. These vary according to the location of the camp 



and according to the season of the year. Provision is also 
made for competitive athletics to foster the teamwork and 
to generate enthusiasm. One Western cantonment has six- 
teen baseball diamonds laid out in one big field; another 
camp has twenty-six football gridirons with a seating 
capacity of 18,000. Multiply the enthusiasm of a single 
game by twenty-six, and consider its effect on the morale 
of participants and the enthusiasm of spectators". As an 
indication of the public interest aroused, it is only neces- 
sary to add that one football game between teams repre- 
senting two Western camps brought in gate receipts of 

There is one phase of camp athletics which deserves 
special attention because it has not been developed by the 
colleges — the laughter-producing games. One of these 
games — swat tag — is especially popular with the men. 
Twenty or thirty men form a circle facing the center, with 
their hands behind their backs, palms up. The man who is 
holds a cotton-stuffed canvas bag about eighteen 
inches long by two inches thick. As he walks around the 
circle he places the bag in the hands of one of the players 
who immediately strikes at his neighbor on the right. The 
idea is for the man on the right to race around the circle 
and back to his place before he is struck. It develops 
extreme physical alertness and puts every man on his toes 
to avoid being *4t". 

Another game has the same boyish fun combined with 
real military value. A man stands in the center of a circle 
and swings a twelve-foot rope with a weight on the end as 
rapidly as possible. Each man has to jump as the rope 
approaches him, and if he does not jump high enough, his 
legs get entangled and he is thrown to the ground. The 
game seems simple, and it is simple; but the men get hys- 
terical with laughter from the results of playing. 


Other games, such as leap-frog and prisoners '-base, now 
forgotten by their younger brothers, are played with real 
joy by the men in camp. Men whose boyhood ended all too 
soon have an opportunity to play as they never played 

There are over a million men now systematically en- 
gaged in athletics in the camps in the United States. Never 
before have so many men played football, baseball, basket- 
ball, and soccer, boxed, and taken part in track and field 
athletics. Never before has the physical welfare of men 
received so much attention. College athletics have chiefly 
developed the exceptional man: army and navy athletics 
develop the mass. 

When the work began the opinion prevailed that a soldier 
could be made by putting a man in uniform and teaching 
him the manual of arms. Experience has proved that ath- 
letics increases a man's fighting efficiency and incidentally 
gives him the wholesome recreation which helps to keep him 
fit. The soldiers who play and laugh make better fighters. 
This is one of the discoveries of American military train- 


Uncle Sam, like a wise guardian, believes in making home 
attractive for his fighting men. Through the War Depart- 
ment commission he has provided each of the sixteen Na- 
tional Army camps with a theatre, having a seating capacity 
of three thousand and a stage upon which plays classed as 
^'Broadway productions" can be shown. These Liberty 
Theatres are modern in every respect, and many of the 
foremost theatrical stars are booked for them. Inside of 
these buildings it is hard for a man to realize that he is in 

13 Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 40-63; Commission on 
Training Camp Activities, pp. 12, 13; Lee's The Training Camp Commissions 
in The Survey, Vol. XXXIX, p. 5. 



camp, which is the effect aimed at by the commission in 
developing the plan. 

A committee of theatrical managers, with Mr. Marc Klaw 
of Klaw and Erlanger as chairman, is helping in the selec- 
tion of talent and in the booking and management through- 
out the camps. As in all its undertakings the commission 
has called in experts to assist in the development of its 

An admission charge of not more than twenty-five cents 
is made, from the proceeds of which expenses will be paid ; 
and any balance left over will be used to finance non- 
revenue-producing activities within the camps. The plan 
is to make the admission just sufficient to cover running 
expenses. The so-called ' ^ Smileage Books ' ' are used by the 
men to pay their admission. These are books of coupons, 
issued in dollar and five dollar sizes, each one containing 
from four to twenty admissions. These books form a wel- 
come and pleasant gift from civilians to their soldier rela- 
tives and friends. 

One function of the Liberty Theatre is to furnish the 
necessary relaxation which in some form must be found by 
the men. It is safe, inexpensive, and wholesome. The 
other function is to help the boys make their own good 
times by exploiting all the talent found among the men 
themselves. The commission aims to secure a man for each 
theatre who has had experience in coaching amateur dra- 
matics — preferably in colleges for men. This dramatic 
coach will search out and develop talent among the men 
themselves. In this way the commission is trying to make 
the men self-amusing, so that when they get to France and 
do not have the facilities for outside theatricals, they will 
be able to entertain themselves. The Liberty Theatre, 
therefore, has a direct and positive place in the training of 
the men who are to make the world safe for democracy. 


In addition to its nse for theatricals by outside and home 
talent, the more important athletic exhibitions, lectures, 
and movie shows will be staged in the theatres. Big sings 
with the song coach leading and with three thousand per- 
formers form another phase of its use. These theatres are 
equipped with projection machines, and the best and latest 
^ ^feature" films are shown. The films are carefully cen- 
sored ; but the censorship does not interfere with adventure, 
wholesome sentiment, and good humor. As in the case of 
plays and music, choice is not confined to the high-brow'', 
classical, or educational : the effort is made to give the men 
exactly what they need for relaxation, and what they would 
get under normal home conditions, barring, of course, any- 
thing demoralizing and degrading. 

It must be remembered that all the events at the Liberty 
Theatre are in addition to the entertainment furnished by 
the Young Men's Christian Association and the Knights of 
Columbus. Nor must we overlook the fact that many thou- 
sand men are to be provided for, and that even the rather 
elaborate arrangements described are by no means suffi- 
cient to accommodate all the men in the larger camps. 
Dependence must still be placed upon activities outside the 
camps. At the same time it should be said that never be- 
fore, and nowhere else, have such large and systematic 
plans for the amusement of any communities been made. 

In general, no concessions to private amusement enter- 
prises are granted within the camps. In a few cases where 
access is not to be had to amusements in neighboring cities, 
concessions have been given for motion pictures and vaude- 
ville in privately erected theatres within the camps. A per- 
centage of the profits go to the post exchange, and the enter- 
tainments are under the close supervision of the military 

Camp Funston at Fort Eiley, Kansas, is one of the few 



exceptions. It has the largest number of troops of any of 
the camps, and it is located at a considerable distance from 
any town large enough to provide amusement for numbers 
of men on leave. To meet this situation, concessions were 
granted to private amusements in a special zone. Here are 
four blocks of enterprises such as soldiers patronize when 
they go to town. Being under careful supervision, they are 
superior to those usually found in the neighboring com- 
munities. There are three theatres, including a motion- 
picture house seating 1500, a stock-company theater with a 
capacity of 2000, and the Liberty Theatre. The billiard and 
pool hall has 150 tables, and it is not uncommon for all of 
them to be in use at once. There are restaurants, soda- 
fountains, cigar-stores, and even a bank; and there are a 
dozen other kinds of shops, among them a meat market 
where the soldiers can buy a slice of ham for a sandwich or 
a whole steer for a barbecue '\ 

The success of these efforts to furnish suitable entertain- 
ment in the camps is shown in the case of one of the South- 
ern cantonments, where, according to the commanding 
general, seventy per cent of the men could have had leave 
from camp during a definite period, and only thirty per cent 
made use of the privilege.^* 


Post exchanges are the series of stores, approximately 
one to each regiment, where the soldier may purchase any 
of the small articles, like tobacco, handkerchiefs, soap, and 
candy, that contribute to his comfort and content, and 
which are not provided by the government. There are from 
eleven to sixteen exchanges in each camp and there is a 
division exchange officer selected by the commission, who, 
under the direction of the commanding officer, has general 

14 Allen and Fosdick^s Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 103-110; Commission 
on Training Camp Activities, pp. 17-19. 


supervision of all exchanges. Any profits made in the 
exchanges are expended in a way decided upon by the votes 
of the men in the regiments. 

The exchanges are not a new institution in military life. 
Their beginnings go back to the Civil War when civilians, 
known as ^ ^sutlers'', followed the armies and sold the men 
whatever they could be induced to buy. Profit rather than 
any interest in or advantage to the soldier was the object. 
Few of them failed to make good profits and rarely did they 
stay long at one place. 

Following the Civil War came the opening of the West 
and the establishment of the *^post trader at army posts. 
The post traders were civilians ; and here again profit was 
the principal motive. The sale of liquor was permitted and 
it gradually became the chief article sold. Early in the 
seventies the occupation of post traders was abolished and 
the canteen'' was established under government direction. 
Here began the sharing of the soldier in the profits. Beer 
and light wines were sold and the profits went into the com- 
pany mess. The canteen continued under these conditions 
till 1901, when the sale of liquor was prohibited, and the 
name changed to ^^post exchange", with the scope much 
wider than the old canteen and with care for the personal 
needs of the men. In this form they have continued to exist 
in the Regular Army posts and National Guard camps. 

The establishment of the sixteen new National Army can- 
tonments put up to the War Commission an exceedingly 
difficult problem. Under existing regulations each unit 
made arrangements for its own exchange, securing funds 
for fixtures and stock by gift from the proceeds of a base- 
ball game or by subscriptions among the men. Such meth- 
ods were not suited to the new situation which required that 
supplies and equipment for a number of stores in each 
camp should be purchased immediately. 



Clarence A. Perry of the Russell Sage Foundation, whose 
specialty is social centers and who had had experience at 
Plattsburg, worked out a plan with the aid of expert mili- 
tary advice, which was adopted by the commission. Its 
chief features included ^^the purchasing for all the post 
exchanges in the country .... by the commission itself 
instead of by each regiment post exchange in some hap- 
hazard way ; in providing money so that the purchases can 
be made at once instead of waiting until the men get their 
first month's pay; and in having a post exchange officer in 
each camp and for each army division.'' 

The first stocks for the National Army post exchanges 
were purchased on from sixty to ninety days' time from 
merchants who believed in the soundness of the project from 
a business point of view. Centralization of control and 
management that had not previously existed were made 
necessary by the new plan. The commission enlisted the 
services of business men of tested ability who were given 
commissions with the rank of captain. These men include 
captains of industry" who have left large business enter- 
prises to help the government give the soldiers a place to 
shop. They have established chains of stores that compare 
favorably with those maintained by any private corpora- 
tion. Beginning with no capital the post exchanges in a 
remarkably short time were doing a prosperous business 
and paying dividends on a large scale. 

The post exchanges at the National Army cantonments 
are housed in long, low buildings, about forty by one hun- 
dred feet, stocked with all sorts of articles that appeal to the 
young American man who likes to drop into an accustomed 
place, smoke a cigarette, discuss the baseball score, or hear 
the latest local news. Each exchange is in charge of a com- 
pany officer, usually a lieutenant, assisted by a steward and 
four or five privates. Candy is on the whole the most 


popnlar of the articles sold, although there are variations 
in demand to be noticed in the di:fferent camps. At Camp 
Meade, Maryland, a huge cake costing fifteen cents, which 
is a meal in itself, is most in demand. Again, it is esti- 
mated that each exchange at Camp Devens, Massachusetts, 
sells one thousand pints of milk daily. In the more elab- 
orately stocked exchanges, besides the usual amount of eat- 
ables and notions, there are pennants and cushions, a 
clothing department, a book-and-magazine section, a nov- 
elty gift counter, and a jewelry counter. Engagement rings 
can be purchased through the exchanges and both officers 
and men avail themselves of the opportunity. 

Moderate prices prevail in all the exchanges as a matter 
of course. Articles never cost more than in city stores and 
often less. Officers ' boots, for which merchants were asking 
$26.00 in a neighboring town, were sold for $16.80 in one of 
the exchanges — the cost plus five per cent profit. Officers 
do not share in the profits, but they are, of course, benefited 
by the lower prices and their purchases help to swell the 
total amount of business. And yet, in spite of and possibly 
because of the moderate prices, the exchanges make money. 
Many exchanges do a business of nearly a thousand dollars 
a day ; and when one remembers that there are from eleven 
to sixteen in each cantonment, it is easy to calculate that 
the trade of a year mounts up into millions of dollars. 
Three months after beginning business the exchanges of 
one cantonment had large and complete stocks fully paid 
for, a surplus of $200,000, and were paying dividends. 

The profits of the post exchanges go into the company 
and regimental funds, and are expended by the councils 
composed of commissioned representatives from these 
organizations on what seems to be most necessary for the 
units. Formerly with a twelve cent a day ration allowance 
for enlisted men, the money was spent to add to the mess. 


Now with a forty cent allowance, the larger part of the 
money goes for extra living comforts, athletic equipment, 
musical instruments for the band, and sometimes for a 
tobacco fund to be used for smokes in France where cigar- 
ettes are more difficult to get. Spending money for com- 
pany dinners and dances is another way of disposing of 
exchange profits. 

These exchanges, constituting as they do *Hhe largest 
chain of department stores in the country'^, are another 
noteworthy development of the social vision of the com- 
missions. They are a distinct contribution to the possi- 
bilities of cooperation in the United States. Their success 
suggests some interesting observations about our com- 
munities outside of the camps. If cooperation produces 
profits at prices lower than competitive ones in the ex- 
changes why can not the principle be applied in retail trade 
generally, and thus help to solve the problem of the in- 
creasing cost of living! Why can not business be socialized 
in the interest of the people, as it has been socialized in the 
National Army cantonments in the interest of the soldiers 1 
Why must we wait for a war to compel us to try to solve 
the problems that we already had with us before the war 


The need for educational work in the camps is easily 
realized when one considers that men of all sorts and con- 
ditions have been gathered by the selective draft. They 
come from the colleges, stores, factories, and farms. Some 
come from remote mountain districts. Some speak and 
write English; and some can only express themselves in 
one of many foreign dialects and languages. 

15 Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 138-155; Commission 
on Training Camp Activities, p. 14; Lee's The Training Camp Commissions in 
The Survey, Vol. XXXIX, p. 5. 


A soldier must understand the orders of Ms officers; he 
must find his way about the camp by means of signboards ; 
and a knowledge of arithmetic is of great advantage to a 
man who would become a good marksman. 

So small is the proportion of illiteracy at the camps that 
the greatest need for elementary education is among the 
foreign-born soldiers — especially among those who have 
lived in colonies of their own people and who have come to 
this country when they were beyond the legal school age. 
Lacking the actual need for English in making a living, they 
have failed to learn it. Another contingent of illiterates 
comes from the mountain districts of the South. 

The War Department commission has appointed a com- 
mittee on education of which Dr. William Orr is chairman. 
Other members of this committee are Dr. P. P. Claxton of 
the Bureau of Education, Dr. Harry Pratt Judson, Presi- 
dent of the University of Chicago, and Dr. John H. Finley, 
President of the University of New York. Use is made of 
university extension courses, and particularly of the educa- 
tional department of the Young Men's Christian Associa- 
tion. The committee is ready to avail itself of any 
educational machinery which can be adapted to its use. 

Most important in the line of educational work is, of 
course, the teaching of English to foreigners, and for this 
purpose the books and methods already worked out for 
teaching English to foreigners outside of the camps are 
used. Instruction, which is of a very practical sort to meet 
the requirements of daily life, includes the names of camp 
features, food, clothing, and, most important of all, mili- 
tary commands. At the same time an effort is made to 
instruct the men in regard to the meaning of democracy, 
and to give them an idea of what they are fighting for. 

But education in the camps goes a long way beyond the 
elementary stage. There are other courses which explain 


the history and sources of the war. Technical courses are 
given with a view to preparing men for transfer from one 
branch of the service to another and for promotion. Such 
courses are mathematics, report-writing, bookkeeping, 
stenography, typewriting, telegraphy, telephony, engineer- 
ing, navigation, warehousing, and scientific management. 
There are in addition college-grade courses that appeal to 
university men and enable them to continue their studies. 

Finally, there is French which in this war is certainly an 
asset to the fighting man who gets to France. In some 
camps French is compulsory for selected groups of officers 
and men, and in all it is a popular study. Courses in the 
French language and in geography enable the soldier to 
acquire a vocabulary of from six hundred to seven hundred 
words and a knowledge of French geography and customs 
which will be of great help to him abroad as a soldier and 
will fit him to appreciate more fully his opportunity for 

Instructors are recruited from various sources. Many 
men in the ranks are capable of teaching French and other 
subjects. Men and women from neighboring towns volun- 
teer their services ; and a large proportion of the remaining 
instructors are officers or Young Men's Christian Associa- 
tion secretaries. 

According to the latest information there are over 100,000 
men enrolled in educational classes in the camps, the 
larger percentage being students of French. The number 
is growing, justifying the characterization of the army and 
navy as ^^the larger university''. In all of the educational 
work the library plays a very important part, especially 
supplying books for supplementary reading. The cooper- 
ation of the library and the Young Men's Christian Asso- 
ciation has resulted in the development of an unique system 
of education for the American soldier and sailor. Military 

VOL. XVI — 33 


training is supplemented by necessary and practical train- 
ing along so-called literary lines. 


To provide a pleasant and respectable place for women 
who visit the camps in search of relatives, friends, and 
sweethearts was the primary purpose of the hostess house. 
Coming in large numbers very few of such visitors have any 
idea of camp conditions. Without assistance or guidance 
many pitiable and distressing results are likely to occur. 
The urgency of the need was brought to the attention of the 
War Council of the Young Women's Christian Association 
last June, when the situation at the Reserve Officers' Train- 
ing Camp at Plattsburg, New York, was laid before it. As 
an outcome the council agreed to cooperate with the com- 
missions by opening hostess houses in the camps when 
requested to do so by the commanding officers. The council 
appropriated $1,000,000 for the purpose out of the $5,000,- 
000 fund with which they began their wartime activities. 
The first hostess house was ready for work late in June, 
1917, and was for the use of the training camp at Platts- 

Similar work had been carried on by the Young Women's 
Christian Association at the San Francisco Exposition in 
1915 in behalf of the women visitors. In addition they had 
maintained a separate building for the comfort and pleas- 
ure of the women who took part in the Exposition — the 
jugglers, acrobats, snake-charmers, freaks, and fortune- 
tellers among others. 

During the trouble upon the Mexican border in 1916, the 
Young Women's Christian Association sent women to three 
of the chief towns near which troops were quartered. There 
they established such branches of work as seemed most nec- 

ic Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 156-168; Commission 
on Training Camp Activities, p. 20. 


essary to meet the abnormal social conditions among the 
thousands of young girls and women who had flocked to the 
vicinity of the mobilization camps. The experience of the 
organization in safeguarding the interests of women during 
fifty years of peace had fitted it to deal with such emer- 

When from thirty to sixty thousand young men are 
brought together in a training camp, there is nothing the 
majority of them are so anxious for as to see their families 
and friends. A comfortable place where they may visit 
with mothers, wives, and sweethearts gives a new meaning 
to life for them, and they go back to their man-made world 
with new courage and with renewed energy for their work. 

The hostess house is always built in an accessible place 
near the main entrance to the cantonment or near to the 
most centrally located railroad station. The buildings are 
large bungalows, varying in size, according to the needs of 
the camp. They have been designed and built under the 
supervision of women, and every effort has been made to 
attain the greatest degree of attractiveness inside and out. 

All the houses are much the same as to their main fea- 
tures. Everywhere the center of things is the big chimney 
in the middle of the big living room, with a double fireplace 
in which log fires burn when needed. There is a parcel 
check room, and a rest room for women with a well-equipped 
nursery adjoining it. A cafeteria serves excellent food at 
moderate prices, and this is the only part of the service for 
which any charge is made. The buildings are electric 
lighted and steam heated ; and there are usually broad sun 
parlors extending across two sides. 

Some of the staff meet the trains to make sure that no 
woman is left to wander about the camp alone in search for 
her soldier; and there is cooperation with the Travelers' 
Aid Society representatives who meet trains at the rail- 


road stations in the neighboring towns and cities. Thus 
everything possible is done to render assistance to the visit- 
ing women, and to protect them from annoyance and trou- 
ble. The secretaries are ^'sympathetic and tireless in the 
mere routine of entertaining visitors. This alert personal 
interest, with never a suggestion of intrusion into the 
privacy of a family gathering, accounts .... as much 
as the inviting interior of these houses for their being 
christened 'the home spot of the camp'. 

''Here is a new handling of the human equation in the 
training of fighters, a matter that has always been the 
concern of the great masters of warfare, but which has 
never before been worked out to this degree. It cannot fail 
to have a salutary effect on even the crudest personality 
that comes within its influence. It helps to clarify the ideas 
and the ideals of democracy, the principles for which these 
men of ours are fighting." 

At first the idea of the hostess house was not regarded 
with much favor by army men. Some of the older officers 
in particular declared that to have women in the camps was 
the last thing they wanted. But as soon as one house was 
opened, all opposition disappeared; very soon the commis- 
sion was receiving indignant letters from commanding 
officers who felt that they had been discriminated against 
because they had no hostess house at their camps. Thus 
the partnership of women in the war has been officially 

Nearly a million dollars has been spent in building and 
equipping hostess houses. About seventy are either in 
operation, in process of construction, or already author- 

17 Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 111-137; War WorJc 
Bulletin, February 5, 15, May 31, 1918; The Camp Dodger, March 23, 1918. 





The hostess house forms a link between the soldier and 
the world of which he was a part before he was summoned 
for military training: it fills its place admirably and con- 
tributes to the happiness and contentment of the soldier by 
giving him an opportunity to meet the home folks, and 
especially his women relatives and friends under pleasant 
and proper surroundings. But for most soldiers these 
visits can be only occasional. Most of their social life and 
their women friends must be found in the neighboring com- 
munities during their time oif from military duty — hence 
the great importance of the mobilization of the social re- 
sources of the nearby towns and cities. 


Formerly camp community service was left to take care 
of itself, but in the present war this work has been intrusted 
by the Commissions on Training Camp Activities to the 
Playground and Recreation Association of America. To 
all places located near camps or cantonments, this organ- 
ization sent out members of its staff with instructions to 
help to mobilize the hospitality of the community to aid the 
men of the army and navy in a systematic and efficient 
manner. Commercial clubs, rotary clubs, fraternal organ- 
izations, Young Men's Christian Associations, churches, 
and organizations of a similar character were informed 
concerning what could be done to make their localities 
attractive and safe for our fighting men. 

The War Camp Community Service, the name under 
which this city and town work is organized, has covered 
over two hundred communities and now has over one hun- 
dred and thirty secretaries in the field linking up the inter- 
ests of the soldiers and neighboring districts. Thousands 


of volunteer workers are making the service possible. 
Cities that last snmmer were discussing what the canton- 
ments would do for them are now asking what they can do 
for the soldiers. A sense of social responsibility has been 
aroused in these communities under the patriotic impulse 
of the war. 

To meet the reasonable demands of week-end leaves of 
absence of about a million and a half of normal American 
young men who are living the rest of the time under strict 
military regulations is the problem of community organ- 
ization. First of all the men want to go to town, look up 
friends, and arrange for amusement. They want a change 
of food, and they long particularly for home cooking. But 
suppose that they are a long way from home and know no 
one in the city near the camp ; and suppose also that they 
have only a five-dollar bill to spend. What do you imagine 
they would do? What would you do in their places? 
Wouldn't you feellDlue and lonesome! And might you not 
be tempted to try to forget yourself in ways you would 
never think of if you were at home and among friends whom 
you knew cared for you? 

The War Camp Community Service has evolved a system 
to meet these needs. Census cards are obtained through 
the aid of the commanding officers of the camps with infor- 
mation as to each man, giving his name, church, fraternity, 
college, profession or business, special interests, and favor- 
ite forms of recreation. This data makes it possible for 
local committees or individuals to put something personal 
into their hospitality. Persons with similar interests, with 
common college, church, or professional affiliations can be 
brought together. The social resources of a given com- 
munity can be used intelligently and efficiently. 

One of the first things done is to open clubs where a man's 
uniform is the only credential needed. Soldiers' and sail- 



ors' clubs have been established everywhere in the vicinity 
of the camps, and many of the larger cities maintain a num- 
ber of them. Maps, guides, and bulletins are published, 
giving information as to the community itself, its oppor- 
tunities for sight-seeing and recreation, and making sugges- 
tions about what to do and where to go. A map and guide 
issued by the Chamber of Commerce of Kansas City has 
the following announcements : 

Your Community Club is located at 1305 Walnut. . . . The 
Club is for you, your relatives, and friends. Home cooked food. 
No charge for pool, shower baths, laundry and pressing facilities 
or shaving equipment. Plenty of games, music and stationery. 

The Club has been opened in order that you may have a home 
while in Kansas City. Use the place as your own home. 

You will enjoy the accommodation and privileges provided. 
Meet your friends and spend your leisure hours at the Club Rooms. 

There are many places of interest in Kansas City for you to see 
— many private homes open to you. Ask the manager of the Club 
how you can have the best time while here. He can give you many 
good suggestions. 

The Club is furnished and maintained by the people of Kansas 
City working with the War Department Commission on Training 
Camp Activities. 

Another suggestion for making the soldier's holiday 
pleasant and recreative is contained in the ''take a soldier 
home to dinner" slogan. Within five blocks of a club in 
New York more than three hundred enlisted men were in- 
vited to private homes last Thanksgiving. On one Sunday 
in a single community five thousand men were taken home 
for dinner. A Chicago man entertains twenty-five men 
every Saturday afternoon. These invitations give the men 
not only the home cooking they miss so much, but also home 
thinking and home talking for which they long probably 
even more. It means a chance to enjoy the things they lack 
under conditions that help and uplift. 


Still another method has been used in many communities. 
New York City entertained fifteen hundred soldiers and 
sailors every Saturday night last winter at New York's 
largest dancing palace, where they could meet young women 
under properly regulated conditions. Infinite tact and care 
are needed to handle such affairs, but it is pleasant to 
record that not once was there any serious abuse of these 
opportunities. The thought of those in charge has been 
that these men are ^ Agoing over to fight for us, and our best 
is none too good" for them. It means real democracy in 
social relations. 

The War Camp Community Service is based upon the 
knowledge that the hours allowed for recreation are apt to 
be misused. In the modern city, of the young people who 
go wrong the largest number are in search of amusement. 
There are forces at work to undermine the health and the 
morals of the men who are to fight the battles of democracy. 
The Commissions on Training Camp Activities have set up 
competitive forces with a view to giving the men healthful, 
interesting recreation while they are away from camp. 
^ ^ The way to overcome the temptations and vices of a great 
city" is 'Ho offer adequate opportunity for wholesome 
recreation and enjoyment." If you want ''to get a fire- 
brand out of the hand of a child the way to do it" is 
"neither to club the child nor to grab the firebrand, but to 
offer in exchange for it a stick of candy !"^^ 

In regard to the problem of the control of vice and drink 
in the neighborhood of camps and training stations, the 
United States government, upon entering the war, deter- 
mined to adopt a policy of absolute repression, and this pro- 
gram has been carried out with such success that it "has 
actually reduced to so small an amount vice and drunken- 

18 Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 1G9-190; Commission 
on Training Camp Activities, pp. 21-23; Baker's Frontiers of Freedom, p. 91. 


ness in our army and navy, that it is a fair statement that 
civilian America will have to clarify its moral atmosphere 
if it is to take back its young men after the war to an equally 
wholesome environment. ' ' 

Under authority given by the Selective Draft Act, ap- 
proved May 18, 1917, the President was authorized ^'to 
make such regulations governing the prohibition of alco- 
holic liquors in or near military camps and to the officers 
and enlisted men of the army as he may from time to time 
deem necessary or advisable." Not only was the Secretary 
of War authorized, but he was ^ directed" to do everything 
^^by him deemed necessary to suppress and prevent" pros- 
titution within such distances as he may deem needful of 
any military camp, station, fort, post, cantonment, training, 
or mobilization place." 

Soon after the passage of this act. Secretary Baker sent 
a letter to the governors of all the States in which he de- 
clared his determination that the new training camps, ^'as 
well as the surrounding zones within an effective radius", 
should not be places of temptation and peril. In short 
our policy is to be one of absolute repression, and I am 
confident that in taking this course the War Department 
has placed itself in line with the best thought and practice 
that modern police-experience has developed. 

^'The War Department intends to do its full part in these 
matters, but we expect the cooperation and support of the 
local communities. If the desired end cannot otherwise be 
achieved, / propose to move the camps from those neighbor- 
hoods in which clean conditions cannot he secured.'' 

The Commissions on Training Camp Activities were 
charged with the responsibility of carrying out the program 
of suppression. A division of law enforcement was estab- 
lished, consisting of a staff of civilians and army and navy 
officers, mostly lawyers, built up under the personal super- 


vision of the chairman, Mr. Fosdick. Representatives of 
the division were stationed in the commnnities near the 
camps, and were instructed to keep the authorities at 
Washington informed of moral conditions, and also to bring 
the policy of the government to the attention of local offi- 
cials. In the preliminary work of gathering information, 
assistance was given by representatives of the Department 
of Justice, the army and navy intelligence departments, 
and by private organizations already engaged in the re- 
pression of vice and drink. 

Such a program obviously required the cooperation of 
local officials throughout the country. This cooperation 
was only obtained after some rather rigorous handling of 
certain local authorities who either did not believe the gov- 
ernment really intended to follow a policy of absolute re- 
pression or who were ignorant of conditions in their home 

By September, 1917, there was not a ^ ^ red light ' ' district 
within five miles of any important military or naval train- 
ing station in the United States : more than twenty-five 
such districts had been closed. Moreover, the cleaning up 
process has extended throughout the country, until by May, 
1918, over seventy '^red light'' districts had been destroyed. 
Forty-five of these districts were not in the immediate 
neighborhood of camps, and consequently did not come 
under Federal control. Their abolition was the result of 
the response of State and municipal authorities to the pol- 
icy of the commissions. 

According to official estimates the venereal disease rate 
has been reduced fifty per cent since the beginning of the 
war, while our military strength has been increased many 
times over. Increasingly stringent regulation of the sale 
of liquor has rapidly diminished the danger from that 
source. One camp reported but four drunk in six weeks. 



Of course, it is impossible for the government to prevent 
absolutely any liquor from getting to the soldier, but ^^the 
man in the service, if he wants a drink, will have to hunt 
for iV 

The campaign against vice and drink is a continuous one. 
Representatives of the division of law enforcement are 
located near every camp, and investigations are constantly 
in progress. Local agents are supervised by district repre- 
sentatives. Any indication of neglect or reaction is 
promptly dealt with by trained workers.^^ 

That the community must be protected against the sol- 
diers as if they were a lot of wild animals was the old idea ; 
but the new socialized view is that the soldiers must be 
protected against the community. The community must 
clean up to make itself a fit place for the soldiers to spend 
their leisure. Absurd stories about vice surrounding the 
camps have been circulated from time to time, but these 
reports have never had any real basis. Dr. Joseph Odell, 
in his study of The New Spirit of the New Army, states that 
he would rather intrust the moral character of his boy to 
Camp Hancock, Augusta, Georgia, than to any college or 
university he knew. ^^This does not cast any unusually 
dark shadow upon the educational institutions of the coun- 
try, but they have never possessed the absolute power to 
control their environment that is now held by the War 
Department ".^^ 

A related problem grows out of the presence of many 
young women and girls in the communities in the vicinity 
of cantonments and the evil consequences that may result 
from the glamour that the uniform seems to have for them. 

19 Allen and Fosdick's Keeping Our Fighters Fit, pp. 191-205; Commission 
on Training Camp Activities, pp. 25-27; Johnson's Eliminating Vice from 
Camp Cities in The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social 
Science, Vol. LXXVIII, pp. 60-64. 

20 Odell 's The New Spirit of the New Army, p. 65. 


So important has this problem proved to be that a special 
committee has been appointed to plan protective work in 
every locality adjacent to the military camps. This com- 
mittee on protective work for girls, of which Miss Maude 
Miner of New York was made chairman, cooperates with 
the War Camp Community Service and with the Travelers' 
Aid Society. 

In places nearby the camps trained workers are stationed 
who undertake to protect young women and girls. Much 
personal service is given and every legitimate device is 
used to occupy the young people in healthful and whole- 
some ways. Provision is made for the meeting of young 
men and women under careful supervision, and only when 
positive and constructive methods have failed and when 
disaster has actually occurred, are other measures taken to 
meet the situation.^^ 

The hostess house, the War Camp Community Service, 
and the Travelers' Aid Society cooperate with the protec- 
tive work for girls and young women to counteract the lure 
of the uniform and to remove pitfalls from the pathways 
that lead to the old, old story of love and youth. 



Camp Dodge was fortunate in its first commanding officer, 
General Edward H. Plummer, ^'a splendid representative 
of the ^new' army, a strict disciplinarian and at the same 
time a big-hearted friend of the soldier." He early took 
occasion to find out what had been done for the entertain- 
ment of the men, whether the shower baths were ready and 
whether the food supply was ample. He made it plain that 
he was vitally interested in the human welfare of the men 
under his control, and that he believed that happy and con- 

21 Commission on Training Camp Activities, p. 28. 



tented men made the best soldiers. He also expressed Ms 
hearty approval of the work of the War Recreation Board. 
Such a sympathetic attitude assured to every branch of 
social work, inside and outside the camp, every reasonable 
opportunity and encouragement during General Plummer's 
term of service. 

The buildings for recreational, educational, social, and 
religious purposes are grouped in a civic center on Depot 
Street, which is located in a central and accessible point in 
the cantonment near the inter-urban station, at which a 
majority of the people who visit the soldiers are likely to 
alight. Here are the library, hostess house. Young Men's 
Christian Association, Knights of Columbus, and Lutheran 
Brotherhood buildings, and the Liberty Theatre. 


Only two of the Young Men's Christian Association 
buildings are in the civic center — the administration build- 
ing and the auditorium which is used for the larger meet- 
ings and which has a seating capacity of from three 
thousand to thirty-five hundred. The other eight buildings 
are scattered through the camp and serve as Association 
headquarters for the different brigades. For a few weeks 
before the different buildings were completed, a ^*big top'' 
tent was pitched just north of Division Headquarters. 

Some idea of the extent of the work of the Association is 
obtained from statistics. At one of the buildings 70,000 
sheets of writing paper and about 50,000 envelopes were 
given away in one week to soldiers, who also spent $186 in 
the same building in a single hour for stamps and picture 
post cards of Des Moines and Camp Dodge. 

Each of the brigade buildings has a large room 50 by 120 
feet in size, capable of seating about a thousand persons, 
besides a smaller room for social activities with facilities 
for writing, books and magazines, newspapers, a large fire- 


place, a piano, a phonograph, and other equipment for 
recreation. There are also smaller rooms for committee 
meetings and for women visitors, and quarters for the staff 
of six men. Each building has a moving picture machine ; 
and postal and money order agencies are provided. By 
July, 1918, it was expected that $40,000 would have been 
expended for this work. 

At every building there is something going on every 
night in the week. Motion pictures, lectures, and musical 
entertainments are arranged. There are classes in French, 
civics, history, and mathematics. The Association aims to 
bring to the soldiers as many as possible of those influences 
which in civilian life made them stronger and better men. 

The supervision of all the work in the cantonment is in 
the hands of a camp secretary and three camp directors 
specializing in religious, educational, and recreative activ- 
ities respectively. These activities at Camp Dodge are 
similar to those conducted by the Young Men's Christian 
Association in other places and have developed out of their 
experience in serving the needs of fighting men in many 
different countries and under a great variety of circum- 

During the month of March, 1918, it is estimated that 
355,065 men used the different buildings. In the same time 
there were fifty-eight educational lectures in the eight 
brigade buildings ; 1065 educational classes met, 9062 books 
circulated from the libraries, and 401 religious meetings 
were held. There were also 108 movie shows and 164 enter- 
tainments of other kinds. Letter writing by the soldiers, 
for which the Young Men's Christian Association furnishes 
materials free, is one of the most popular occupations. 
During the same month 441,450 letters were written and 
money order sales amounted to $27,128.57.^^ 

22 The Camp Dodger, September 21, October 5, 1917, April 20, 1918; The 
Des Moines Bc